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Volume 26 No. 204
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EPL Names Guardian's David Pemsel CEO After Lengthy Search

The EPL has named Guardian Media Group CEO DAVID PEMSEL to the same role after a "long and protracted search" to find RICHARD SCUDAMORE's successor, according to Tom Morgan of the London TELEGRAPH. Pemsel's appointment is a "major surprise" and comes after Chelsea Chair BRUCE BUCK, who "led the recruitment process, had been forced to go back to the drawing board twice in his search." Pemsel, who will start by April, arrives amid "huge pressure to maintain the league's multi-billion pound TV rights deals." The EPL will "draw on his previous experience" as ITV Group Marketing Dir. He has also worked with Disney, Discovery and "various other TV production companies" (London TELEGRAPH, 10/2). The WALL STREET JOURNAL's Joshua Robinson notes the process "dragged on far longer than the league ever expected after its first choice" -- Discovery exec SUSANNA DINNAGE -- "changed her mind about accepting the role last December." But as the EPL "returned to square one, something was already clear: it would hire someone with a background in media." Pemsel has "big shoes to fill" to follow Scudamore's "personality and gift for relationships." Beyond growing the league's "global reach through carefully managed broadcast deals during nearly 20 years in charge," Scudamore also "proved himself adept at herding one of the most mercurial constituencies in sports" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 10/2).