Joanna Shields takes Facebook role

LONDON — In a rare setback for Shine Group topper Liz Murdoch, Joanna Shields, the senior exec masterminding the shingle’s social media plans, has quit — less than six months after coming on board.

Murdoch and Shields, who has accepted a big job at Facebook, were to have double-headed a high-profile event at this month’s Mip TV mart in Cannes, but the keynote speech has been scrapped.

Shields, the former CEO of Bebo where she pioneered original drama commissions like “KateModern,” will become Facebook’s VP of sales and business development for EMEA.

But she will remain non-exec chairman of ShineVu, the new social networking division she was hired to bow.

In an email to staff, Murdoch said the move had followed “much soul searching and lengthy conversations.”

While she was sad not to be working with “my friend Joanna” on a day-to-day basis, the Shine supremo said she remained committed to ShineVu.

“I will not rest until we make the multiplatform Shine Group a reality,” insisted Murdoch.

“I would go as far as to describe what we must become as a ‘multicultural’ creative company as it applies to TV and digital worlds.

“We cannot be true to ourselves or fulfil our greatest potential and not do it.”

The high-profile Shields, who worked for Google prior to leading Bebo, was employed briefly by AOL prior to accepting Murdoch’s offer to join Shine, Blighty’s biggest “super-indie.”

Of her new gig at Facebook she said: “With its culture of authentic identity, Facebook is redefining marketing and transforming how businesses and consumers interact.”

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