The Newsroom

All change at the top of ITN

CEO in suprise departure after turbulent time

SE
TheSebastian
It's reported that ITN Chief Anna Mallett is off to Netflix, despite only joining the news producer in 2019.

It's a surprisingly short time for a job that's usually a long play career.

Her tenure has seen tensions with long serving journalists, ITN clients and the government. The biggest contract with ITV News is without a safe pair of hands editor now Geoff Hill has left for medical care and his long term cover Rachel Corp isn't well rated, supported or liked (according to 3x ITN senior staff opinion, said directly to me)

ITN has a big pension fund liability, and its reason for existing are now not a real factor: ITV is effectively one; costs of running a news service are lower and access to agency material easy - making a central production resource less of a 'thing' ; ITN is unlikely to win much new business for its core work, and channel 4 and 5 contracts are at risk over next 5 years from ownership and political changes

On here you may know her best from her Alistair Stewart decision (with Rachel Corp)

https://tbivision.com/2020/11/10/netflix-hires-itns-ceo-anna-mallett-for-production-appoints-overall-deals-exec/
AlfieMulcahy and Meridian AM gave kudos
JO
Jonwo
I can't see ITN losing the contracts for ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 anytime soon.
WH
what West Country (East) Points West
Jonwo posted:
I can't see ITN losing the contracts for ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 anytime soon.

I reckon Sky might come in with a killer offer next time C5’s contract comes up for renewal. Something they can’t refuse.
SE
TheSebastian
Jonwo posted:
I can't see ITN losing the contracts for ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5 anytime soon.


I'm told that there was discussion to put channel 4 news out of London as part of the stations regional commitment, but it wasn't possible within the ITN contract/price. So we could have had C4 News and not the Steph Show as out of M25 commitment.

Viacom CBS execs apparently told Australian media that they are uncomfortable at US HQ about the ITN/5 arrangement (in response to a question on outsourcing 10 news like 5 news is in UK) I did see a similar article, I'll hunt.

CBS owned 5 is unlikely to go with NBC owned Sky. More likely to go in house or stand alone contract than another broadcaster.
JK
JK08 Granada North West Today
Viacom CBS execs apparently told Australian media that they are uncomfortable at US HQ about the ITN/5 arrangement (in response to a question on outsourcing 10 news like 5 news is in UK) I did see a similar article, I'll hunt.

CBS owned 5 is unlikely to go with NBC owned Sky. More likely to go in house or stand alone contract than another broadcaster.


'CBS/5 World News' anyone?
GM
GMc Central Reporting Scotland
The biggest contract with ITV News is without a safe pair of hands editor now Geoff Hill has left for medical care and his long term cover Rachel Corp isn't well rated, supported or liked (according to 3x ITN senior staff opinion, said directly to me)


Rachel Corp was permanently appointed as Editor of ITV News last month, so must be rated by someone at ITN.
SE
TheSebastian
GMc posted:
The biggest contract with ITV News is without a safe pair of hands editor now Geoff Hill has left for medical care and his long term cover Rachel Corp isn't well rated, supported or liked (according to 3x ITN senior staff opinion, said directly to me)


Rachel Corp was permanently appointed as Editor of ITV News last month, so must be rated by someone at ITN.


Yes, Anna Mallett and Chris Shaw are both fans, for different reasons. But 'rated' is more a measure of wider respect.

White, blonde, private school educated woman hires White, blonde, private school educated women isn't a shock. It's the 2020 version of the 1970s hiring of middle class, middle aged white guys from the same golf club

ITN has bigger problems than just declining reputation. This from the Telegraph:
Quote:
Ms Mallett, 46, is leaving ITN at a critical moment. According to its latest accounts, the company faces a material uncertainty over its ability to continue as a going concern, while the public service broadcasters for which it produces news are also under financial and regulatory pressure.


For a major media company to have to include the legal statement about it as a going concern is really unusual. Pension deficit is £141 million, it's reported.
Last edited by TheSebastian on 10 November 2020 5:10pm - 2 times in total
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
Some ridiculous conclusions being jumped to in the opening post on the basis of one exec leaving for what is likely a better paid position elsewhere.
Turns out nobody had 2020 vision.
SE
TheSebastian
Some ridiculous conclusions being jumped to in the opening post on the basis of one exec leaving for what is likely a better paid position elsewhere.


No conclusions given. What factually is wrong, and what interpretation of those facts is unreasonable?
JA
JAS84 Yorkshire Look North (E.Yorks & Lincs)
ITN has bigger problems than just declining reputation. This from the Telegraph:
Quote:
Ms Mallett, 46, is leaving ITN at a critical moment. According to its latest accounts, the company faces a material uncertainty over its ability to continue as a going concern, while the public service broadcasters for which it produces news are also under financial and regulatory pressure.


For a major media company to have to include the legal statement about it as a going concern is really unusual. Pension deficit is £141 million, it's reported.
Shocked Are they saying they might be about to go bankrupt? What would happen to ITV News, Channel 4 News, and 5 News if ITN closes down?
SE
TheSebastian
JAS84 posted:
ITN has bigger problems than just declining reputation. This from the Telegraph:
Quote:
Ms Mallett, 46, is leaving ITN at a critical moment. According to its latest accounts, the company faces a material uncertainty over its ability to continue as a going concern, while the public service broadcasters for which it produces news are also under financial and regulatory pressure.


For a major media company to have to include the legal statement about it as a going concern is really unusual. Pension deficit is £141 million, it's reported.
Shocked Are they saying they might be about to go bankrupt? What would happen to ITV News, Channel 4 News, and 5 News if ITN closes down?


Not necessarily. Deficits need dealing with, and it might become a matter of a deal with the pension regulator.

The shareholders are Thomson Reuters, DMGT (daily mail) and ITV PLC so they would have to decide to rescue the fund with the company as currently constructed, of if they don't the current company could become insolvent as liabilities fall due. In that case, the business could be sold off - it has valuable contacts with revenue - so what you see on air wouldn't change. The long term future is uncertain, but broadcasts earn cash so will continue, even if the company fell into legal administration and then sale.

To be fair the departing CEO after just 18 months or so tenure, its been a long time issue with pensions. The last CEO served for 8 years (John Hardie) and before that Mark Wood was CEO for 6 years. Pension debt hasn't happened overnight.

I'd imagine dealing with pensions and the staffing and culture issues (https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7768219/amp/Channel-4-News-biased-against-Tories-say-journalists.html is one report, Mail as its free but paywalled telegraph and broadcastnow + private eye covered similar reports of staff, board and client tensions.

Sorry for long post, but facts matter rather than evidence free dismissal of a story.
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
C4 News hold the government to account, or would do at least if ministers were not boycotting their scrutiny. ITV News now also running a campaign stressing their independence.

Most PSB broadcasters are also far more optimistic about the future than they were back in the Spring.
Last edited by Brekkie on 10 November 2020 7:12pm - 2 times in total
Turns out nobody had 2020 vision.

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