Rupert Murdoch stepping down as Fox and News Corp chairman

Rupert Murdoch stepping down as Fox and News Corp chairman

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch, currently chairman of Fox Corporation and executive chairman of News Corp, will step down from all his roles in November when the companies hold their annual meetings.

He will be appointed Chairman Emeritus of each company with son Lachlan Murdoch, 52, to succeed him as Chairman.

“For my entire professional life, I have been engaged daily with news and ideas, and that will not change,” Murdoch wrote in a memo to employees on Thursday.

“But the time is right for me to take on different roles, knowing that we have truly talented teams and a passionate, principled leader in Lachlan who will become sole chairman of both companies.

“Neither excessive pride nor false humility are admirable qualities. But I am truly proud of what we have achieved collectively through the decades, and I owe much to my colleagues, whose contributions to our success have sometimes been unseen outside the company but are deeply appreciated by me.”

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“On behalf of the Fox and News Corp boards of directors, leadership teams, and all the shareholders who have benefited from his hard work, I congratulate my father on his remarkable 70-year career,” said Lachlan Murdoch.

“We thank him for his vision, his pioneering spirit, his steadfast determination, and the enduring legacy he leaves to the companies he founded and countless people he has impacted.”

The 92-year-old media mogul, who got into the newspaper business in Australia the 1950s, became a major Hollywood executive in 1985 when he purchased Twentieth Century Fox from oilman Marvin Davis.

In 1986, Murdoch got into the TV business after he purchased several US television stations and created Fox Broadcasting. Fox News launched in 1996 as a startup competitor to CNN.

There were also controversies in his long career, including in 2011 over News of the World reporters hacking phones to get stories.

Under Murdoch’s leadership, Fox News, has echoed election lies espoused by former President Donald Trump in the wake of the 2020 election.

Fox Corp ultimately paid US$787 million ($1.23 billion) in a defamation settlement with Dominion Voting Systems and faces another lawsuit from Dominion competitor Smartmatic.

“The battle for the freedom of speech and, ultimately, the freedom of thought, has never been more intense,” he said.

“My father firmly believed in freedom, and Lachlan is absolutely committed to the cause. Self-serving bureaucracies are seeking to silence those who would question their provenance and purpose. Elites have open contempt for those who are not members of their rarefied class. Most of the media is in cahoots with those elites, peddling political narratives rather than pursuing the truth.”

Rupert Murdoch has six children including Lachlan, James, Elisabeth and Prudence, Grace and Chloe.

He said he would still be actively involved in the “contest of ideas’’.

“In my new role, I can guarantee you that I will be involved every day in the contest of ideas. Our companies are communities, and I will be an active member of our community. I will be watching our broadcasts with a critical eye, reading our newspapers and websites and books with much interest, and reaching out to you with thoughts, ideas, and advice. When I visit your countries and companies, you can expect to see me in the office late on a Friday afternoon,” Mr Murdoch said.

Source: The Australian, Nine News