Australia’s troubled free-to-air TV broadcaster Ten Network has appointed Paul Anderson as its sixth CEO in five years. He replaces Hamish McLennan, who quits as both CEO and executive chairman.
Non-executive director David Gordon also becomes chairman.
The management reshuffle follows a deal – that has yet to be approved by regulators – for the News Corp.-controlled pay-TV group Foxtel to lead a rescue.
After months of negotiations, Ten last month announced that Foxtel would pay A$77 million (US$59 million) for a 15% stake in the company and that Foxtel’s advertising business Multi Channel Network, which will in future handle Ten’s ad sales. Including the Foxtel capital injection, Ten is to raise A$154 million (US$118 million) through new share sales.
Anderson has been chief financial officer of TEN since March 2011, having held various senior finance roles at the company since he joined in 2003. He was promoted to the role of COO in April 2014.
In a statement, Gordon thanked McLennan “for his contribution during what has been a challenging period in TEN’s history. He has led a strong and talented management team to effect a turnaround in the company’s performance.”
The network’s CEO Grant Buckley was fired in early 2011 and replaced by Lachlan Murdoch as interim CEO until 2012. James Warburton took over, but he was in turn removed in February 2013. Russel Howcroft was acting CEO for less than two months before McLennan took over in March 2013.
Gordon’s appointment is the first step in the Board changes announced on June 15 that the TEN Board will be reduced in size to six directors. The board will then comprise two independent directors (one of whom will be chairman), one representative of Foxtel and three representatives of existing major shareholders. The company said that it is now looking to recruit a new chief financial officer.
Anderson will receive a salary of $1,250,000 (US$957,000) per annum, though performance targets and participation in the company incentive scheme could more than double that.