SBD/March 27, 2014/Media

BT TV Ousts CEO Marc Watson As Part Of Major Overhaul In Company Strategy

Watson will leave as his division is merged with BT Sport into one unit
BT TV CEO Marc Watson "has been squeezed out as part of a major revamp of the telecoms company’s media divisions," according to Nic Fildes of the LONDON TIMES. Watson will leave "as his division is merged with BT Sport into one unit." BT is "now looking for a new managing director for the expanded business to improve its standing in the TV market." BT has spent US$3.3B on a host of sports rights over the past two years "in a radical shift in strategy" (LONDON TIMES, 3/26). In London, Christopher Williams noted that strategy is overseen by BT Consumer Division CEO John Petter, who "will appoint a managing director" of BT TV & Sport in place of Watson, "with responsibility for running BT Sport as well as managing the other parts of its television business" (London TELEGRAPH, 3/26). Watson said that it was the right time to “take on a fresh challenge.” He added, “I am proud of what we have achieved in BT TV. We have built a top quality TV service from scratch and BT Sport is thriving thanks to the great live sport we’ve secured" (FINANCIAL TIMES, 3/26). The HOLLYWOOD REPORTER's Stuart Kemp reported Watson's departure "sparked speculation that the telecom giant may be considering a strategy change after its high-stakes entry into the pay TV arena and competition for content" (HOLLYWOOD REPORTER, 3/26).
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