LONDON — A surprise candidate has entered the field as a potential successor to ITV’s Charles Allen, who recently quit the embattled broadcaster.
Eileen Gallagher, a former ITV exec who went on to successfully launch Shed Prods., the shingle behind “Footballers’ Wives,” is believed to have been approached about the job.
While Gallagher has not run a top U.K. company, she is highly regarded in U.K. TV circles. She successfully floated Shed on the Alternative Investment Market last year; in her role as chair of producers association Pact, she played a key role in ensuring that British indies won a substantially improved deal on rights retention.
Before forming Shed, Gallagher was managing director of ITV combo LWT and deputy managing director of Granada Broadcasting, working alongside Allen.
Shed specializes in long-running drama skeins and recently sold “Footballers’ Wives” to ABC in the U.S.
Meanwhile, rumors of another private equity-led bid for ITV continue to circulate.
The ITV board rejected last spring a bid led by Apax and British TV veteran Greg Dyke.
There is speculation that another Brit TV vet, Michael Jackson, now prexy of U.S. Internet giant IAC/InterAciveCorp, may be fronting a bid.