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Murdoch promotes 5 top execs to Fox ahead of Disney deal

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MUMBAI: After Disney won the bid to acquire 21st Century Fox (21CF) assets against Comcast earlier this year, future CEO and chairman Lachlan Murdoch has set key leadership positions for the properties left behind in the merger that will now be called new Fox.

Steve Tomsic, currently deputy CFO for 21CF, will be promoted to chief financial officer at new Fox. Eric Shanks, currently chief operating officer and executive producer at Fox Sports, will become CEO of Fox Sports.

In a statement, Murdoch said, “Collectively they bring to Fox the vision, entrepreneurial spirit and proven track records to position Fox to seize future opportunities for its leading and deeply resonant brands across sports, news and entertainment.”

Mike Biard will become president of operations and distribution for Fox, another key revenue function. His current title is president of distribution for the Fox Networks Group.

Paul Cheesbrough will remain chief technology officer, but his job will be expanded to include oversight of the company’s direct-to-consumer platforms in anticipation of launching a streaming service.

Marianne Gambelli will see her portfolio expand as she becomes president of ad sales. She manages ad sales for the Fox News channel and the Fox business network.

Tomsic said, “We are fortunate to be able to continue working with these enormously talented executives who have helped make our businesses the incredible successes they are today.”

The appointments of the soon-to-be leadership team will take effect after the Disney transaction closes. Disney is buying Fox's television production and movie studio, FX cable channel, National Geographic, stake in Hulu and such international operations Star India.

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