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Hagans ankles ailing Optus

Fourth chief exec in three years to leave feevee cabler

SYDNEY — Cable & Wireless-controlled Oz feevee cabler Optus suffered a setback with increasingly skeptical media analysts when its fourth chief exec in three years left the troubled operation on Tuesday.

Don Hagans, a former veep of UIH’s successful Oz rural paybox Austar and ex-chief of staff to U.S. Sen. Phil Gramm (R-Texas), confounded expectations by failing to renew his six-month contract and made way for Optus strategy and regulation director and former C&W exec Chris Weston.

Some observers suggested Hagans may have had differences with management at the cabler’s telephony parent Optus.

Hagans was hired to work his Austar magic on Optus’ faltering feevee biz after months of bickering among stakeholders, staff pinkslips, thwarted IPO plans, rich programming deals and stagnating subscriber numbers.

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