New Foster family reshapes London biz

ARG formally opens May 14

Michael Foster, former co-chairman of ICM (U.K.) and once the most feared tenpercenter in London, is getting back into the agenting biz.

Foster has quit his post as managing director of content for Carlton TV to launch a new agency, dubbed Artists Rights Group. ARG will formally open May 14.

He is being partnered by Sue Latimer, who last week resigned as head of the talent division at Curtis Brown. Her clients include Brit actors John Hannah, Helen Baxendale, Jimmy Nesbitt and Adrian Lester.

More agents (and their clients) are expected to flock to the ARG flag in the coming weeks, heralding the biggest shakeup in the London agency biz for several years.

The combative Foster played a central role (alongside co-chairman Duncan Heath) in establishing ICM as the U.K.’s dominant agency. Four years ago he engineered the takeover of Virgin Radio on behalf of his DJ client Chris Evans, and then ankled ICM to join Evans’ Ginger Media Group as managing director of TV.

He was ousted a few months later in a boardroom coup and turned to production before joining Carlton in 1999. He has kept a low profile for the past 18 months, working on Carlton’s rights acquisitions strategy.

Latimer formerly worked at the William Morris Agency, quitting to join Curtis Brown in late 1999, just ahead of the closure of WMA’s London talent division early last year.

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