It seems to be the end of an era at 21st Century Fox. According to reports, CEO Rupert Murdoch is preparing to hand over his title to his youngest son, James. The company has yet to confirm the rumors, but a Fox spokesperson did announce that the next upcoming board of director’s meeting will discuss succession.
Though the passing of the CEO title is anticipated, the 84-year-old Murdoch is not by any means expected to retire. He’ll still be a controlling shareholder in the media giant and continue in his role as executive chairman. His oldest son, Lachlan, will likely join him as an executive co-chairman, and they’ll work with James in managing daily operations. According to CNBC, sources have said the brothers would be working in “partnership,” and that, “James will have the primary role in running Fox while Lachlan will take on a broader strategic role from his co-chairman position.”
Meanwhile, the reorganization will not end with the Murdochs. Chief operating officer Chase Carey will also step down and serve in some advisory capacity, likely through 2016. Currently, James Murdoch is Carey’s co-COO, so the promotion of James and the departure of Carey would leave a vacant position to be filled.
Prior to becoming co-COO, James has held senior and executive positions in the corporation, including Asian Operations, Star, and News Corp. prior to the split from Fox. He also was CEO and chairman of BSkyB, a company in which Fox has a large stake. He’s currently on the board of directors at Vice Media, in which 21st Century Fox has a 5% stake.
In taking over the role of CEO of 21st Century Fox, James will head the empire that includes cable networks like FX, Fox News, as well as the 20th Century Fox TV and film studios.