Well-known British television executive Jeff Ford is retiring at the end of the year after a 40-year career in the business. Ford is a familiar face in the U.K. and international TV business and will step down as managing director of Fox Networks Group U.K. at the end of the year.
He has also been overseeing FNG’s drive into original programming internationally, with the upcoming espionage thriller “Deep State” set to be Fox’s first foray into homegrown drama in Europe.
“Jeff Ford is synonymous with the U.K. television industry,” said Diego Londono, COO, FNG Europe & Africa. “Since joining our organization in 2015, Jeff has been instrumental in the success of our U.K. business, alongside creating and launching our original scripted content strategy for the region.”
The FNG boss added that Ford will continue to work on “Deep State” beyond his departure from the company. “We’ll continue to be working closely with Jeff well into 2018, as we launch our first regional commission ‘Deep State’ in over 50 markets across the region,” he said.
Prior to Fox, Ford was director of programs at Ireland’s TV3, which he joined in 2013. He is better known as head of content at Channel 5, now owned by Viacom, and a buyer at Channel 4, where he was a familiar face at industry events including the L.A. Screenings, where he made deals for U.S. shows for the free-TV networks. He started at Channel 5 when it launched in the late 1990s.
Fox said it is recruiting for Ford’s replacement. In other changes at FNG, Shoshana Wilson moves from head of acquisitions to head of scheduling and programming, FNG U.K., handing her responsibility for programming across the Fox, National Geographic, and NatGeo Wild channels.