SYDNEY: James Murdoch, heir apparent to the News Corporation empire, will in June reportedly quit the Dukedom of BSkyB in London's western suburbs to sit at Poppa's right hand in the Palace of Rockefeller, Sixth Avenue, New York City.

He is also expected to join elder brother Lachlan on NewsCorp's main board - on which the latter's seat has been carefully mothballed despite quitting his executive role in July 2005 and relocating to Sydney.

Although BSkyB refused to comment on the story, insiders say the Emperor commanded his heir to return stateside last year. James apparently declined, wanting first to make his mark as a real businessman at the helm of Pop's UK satellite TV monopoly.

His steering of BSkyB has won him some admirers, despite initial widespread opposition to his appointment by British and US institutional investors [WARC News: 04-Nov-03].

"I think James Murdoch has proved himself to be very capable at the head of BSkyB, particularly in the area of new media area," opines analyst Atul Lele of White Funds Management in Sydney. "Out of the entire NewsCorp portfolio, BSkyB has been the most progressive in adopting new technology."

Data sourced from Sydney Morning Herald; additional content by WARC staff