Choice of Ramzan Golant surprises biz

LONDON — All3Media, one of Blighty’s biggest indies, has surprised industryites by tapping an advertising maven to be its new CEO rather than a topper from a production background.

She is Farah Ramzan Golant, exec chairwoman of the U.K.’s largest ad agency, Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, where she has served for almost 23 years.

Steve Morrison, one of All3Media’s trio of co-founders, will remain chairman to help Ramzan Golant with the transition from advertising to TV.

As part of the deal, she is to receive a stake in the shingle, which failed to secure a buyer last year when it was put on a sale for a reputed £700 million ($1.09 billion).

The new CEO will spearhead All3Media’s growth strategy, which involves building business in the U.S. where it has scored with “Undercover Boss” and “Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader.” But a U.S. version of “Skins” for MTV was axed.

All3Media encompasses around 20 production companies. Its slate includes a wide range of fare including blue-collar drama “Shameless,” innovative comedy such as “Peep Show” and reality shows like “The Only Way is Essex.”

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