Ofcom topper leaves post

Carter may have his sights set on a gig in the U.S.

Stephen Carter, CEO of Blighty’s Office of Communications (Ofcom), is to ankle the regulator this fall.

The announcement that Carter is to step down comes as no surprise, but tongues are wagging about where he might be headed.

Of late Carter, 42, has made no secret of his desire to move on from regulation and land another high-profile media job.

One possibility is that he may have his sights set on a gig in the U.S.

Formerly NTL topper, he ran J. Walter Thompson’s British office, before that. Carter, in tandem with the regulator’s chairman David Currie, set up Ofcom from scratch, joining the outfit in February 2003.

His regime will be remembered principally for relaxing the rules relating to the public service obligations of the U.K.’s biggest terrestrial broadcaster, ITV, and for ensuring that a significant chunk of the mighty BBC’s activities come under Ofcom’s gaze.

Currie said Friday: “Stephen took on an immensely challenging task — and has performed outstandingly. His legacy is an effective and credible organization which plays an important role in delivering greater choice, lower prices and greater innovation.”

Carter, who will leave on Oct.15, said: “There is never a good time to leave a great job. However, Ofcom is now firmly established, broadband and digital competition are delivering real results, and the recent extension of David’s term makes for an orderly transition.”

Carter’s likely successor is his deputy, ex-Tony Blair and BBC policy adviser Ed Richards.

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