By: Todd Cunningham | The Wrap
His exit, effective at year’s end, comes amid reports that Dow Jones editor in chief Robert Thomson will take over News Corp.’s publishing company when the media giant splits into two next year. Mockridge, a long-time Murdoch colleague who was born in New Zealand, had been seen as a favorite for the job.
“For nearly 22 years, it has been my pleasure to have Tom Mockridge as a colleague,” News Corp. CEO and chairman Murdoch said in a statement. “Whether it was his early days with our newspaper group in Australia, his incredible work building SKY Italia, or his steadfast leadership of News International, Tom has always been a skilled executive and a trusted friend. His decision to step down is absolutely and entirely his own. I am sorry to see him leave us but I know he will be a great success wherever he goes.”
Mockridge previously ran the Sky Italia pay TV business before replacing Rebekah Brooks as head of News International, in the wake of the U.K. phone hacking scandal.
News Corp. is planning to separate the publishing company from its entertainment assets, including its film studio, the Fox broadcast network and its cable networks. The company has always said that Murdoch would remain chairman and CEO of the entertainment company, as well as chairman of the publishing group.
In June, News Corp. announced it would split into two companies — one for its publishing assets, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post and HarperCollins, the other for its film and television businesses, including 20th Century Fox studio and Fox News cable channel.
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