BSkyB Board Prepares to Anoint New CEO

03 November 2003

British satellite broadcast giant BSkyB, controlled by America's News Corporation via a minority 35.4% stake, will today (Monday) meet to appoint a new chief executive.

The specially appointed nominations committee, led by Lord Norman St John Stevas, former Tory party grandee and longtime friend of Sky chairman Rupert Murdoch, will convene this afternoon to consider a shortlist of two to three "suitable" names.

But the main shootout is expected to be between BSkyB group finance director Martin Stewart and the chairman's youngest son James. Although the latter is bitterly opposed by a powerful group of institutional investors, the smart money in the City of London is on Murdoch minor.

The question intriguing onlookers: will Rupert be allowed to vote for his offspring? BSkyB last night emphasised that directors with "a material interest" could be barred from voting — but only by resolution of the entire board.

Data sourced from: Times Online (UK); additional content by WARC staff