Exec to head network business operations

Former Fox exec Ira Kurgan has rejoined the broadcast web as chief of network business operations.

Kurgan’s return had been rumored for months following the departure of Fox business affairs chief Lee Bartlett, who joined the U.K.’s ITV as chief operating officer in March.

At the time, Kurgan said he was remaining at Yahoo, where he was chief business officer for the online company’s network division.

But the call to return to Fox — which he first joined in December 1987 during the network’s infancy — was apparently too strong. In the new position, Kurgan will head up all business operations, reporting to Fox Entertainment chairman Peter Liguori. He’ll also work with Fox Digital Media prexy Dan Fawcett on certain deals.

Liguori announced Kurgan’s return on Tuesday.

During his three years at Yahoo, Kurgan handled all content acquisitions, business and legal affairs, partnerships and strategic alliances.

Kurgan had headed up Fox’s business operations for a decade before jumping to Yahoo in 2005. Prior to his 18-year stint at Fox, Kurgan spent time at CBS and United Artists.

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