Rupert Murdoch Says He Hopes Son Lachlan Will Return to News Corp.
The conglomerate's planned split into an entertainment and a publishing company has renewed succession speculation.
News Corp. chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch may not bring in his eldest son Lachlan Murdoch to run the publishing company that will be created in the conglomerate's planned split, but he still hopes to bring him back into the fold in some form.
"That specific role [of publishing CEO] is not on the agenda, but I certainly hope that Lachlan will return to the company," and not necessarily on the publishing side of the business, the media mogul told the Wall Street Journal.
The planned split into an entertainment and a publishing company has renewed speculation about succession at News Corp. Youngest son James Murdoch is currently deputy COO of News Corp. with a focus on its global pay TV assets, but the company didn't immediately detail any potential changes to his future role once the company is split up.
"Now my daughter Elisabeth is involved," the media mogul also emphasized in an interview with CNBC on Thursday. She has been heading up production firm, which News Corp. acquired last year. Again, the company didn't immediately signal whether her role could change after the split.
Murdoch also emphasized Thursday that he was not planning to go anywhere soon. "I'll head the board until they bury me," he said.
The Journal also reported Friday that Rupert Murdoch embraced the idea of a split earlier this month at a board meeting in Milan after COO Chase Carey and CFO David DeVoe, who had been known as proponents of a split, outlined in much detail the strategic benefits. Murdoch studied recent and pending spin-offs, including those of McGraw-Hill and Viacom/CBS Corp., before the meeting, according to the paper.
Board members left the meeting with the feeling that Murdoch had finally been convinced that the publishing and entertainment businesses of his company were different enough and needed separate leadership in the future, the Journal said.