Lachlan Murdoch, not James, will lead new Fox company

Lachlan Murdoch, not James, will lead new Fox company

Lachlan Murdoch, not James, will lead new Fox company

Twenty First Century Fox's James Murdoch will be succeeded by his brother Lachlan as chief executive officer once the company's TV and film assets are acquired by Walt Disney Co, Fox said on Wednesday.

The formal annointment of Lachlan Murdoch comes as younger brother James Murdoch, 45, is reported to be looking at starting a venture capital fund to invest in digital and worldwide media businesses once the $52.4bn Fox-Disney deal is completed.

The appointments of Lachlan Murdoch and Nallen had been expected, as was the fact that there is no role for current 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch in the new company. Fox Entertainment Group chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman are in advanced negotiations for a one-year contract extension to steer the division until the sale is finalized.

The younger son, who now serves as chairman of Fox as well as the UK's Sky, had been expected to take up a senior position at Disney.

Fox is preparing for a future without its film and TV studios, as well as cable channels such as FX and National Geographic.

As news of the Disney-Fox deal began to cement last December, there were reports that James could move to Disney in a senior role after the Disney acquisition.

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Rupert Murdoch will serve as co-chairman of the new Fox, alongside Lachlan.

That leaves the newly formed Fox with Fox News Channel; Fox Business Network; Fox Broadcasting Company; Fox Sports; Fox Television Stations Group; and sports cable networks FS1, FS2, Fox Deportes and Big Ten Network.

Further complicating matters U.S. media company Comcast launched its own £22bn for Sky in April, which caused Sky to withdraw its recommendation to its shareholders to accept the previous Fox offer.

The Murdochs are expected to spearhead the new, slimmer Fox once the deal shakes out.

"The opportunity to reshape a business strategy and an operational approach uniquely tailored to the new Fox is truly compelling", he said. But that began to change after Lachlan rejoined the business almost a decade later.

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