NEW YORK (MEDIA GENERAL) – Media mogul Rupert Murdoch plans to step down as CEO of 21st Century Fox, per CNBC.
Murdoch, 84, is expected to release day-to-day duties of the mass media corporation to his son, James, but will remain executive chairman and is expected to still have the final say within the company. It is unclear when the changes will take effect, but it is expected to be made official at a board meeting next week, per CNN.
According to one source familiar with the proceedings, this move indicates the next generation is ready to fill their father’s big shoes.
“James will have the primary role in running Fox, while Lachlan will take on a broader strategic role from his co-chairman position,” the source told CNBC.
Murdoch, who was born in Australia, started his media conglomerate by acquiring several newspapers in Australia and New Zealand in the late 1950’s. Murdoch moved his conglomerate to England and eventually the U.S. to establish News Corp. He became a naturalized American citizen in 1985 so he could own U.S. television stations, purchasing 20th Century Fox for $250 million. In 1996, he launched Fox News, a 24-hour cable news network that has a wide audience, particularly among American conservatives.
Murdoch: By The Numbers
84: Rupert Murdoch is 84 years old, which perhaps has played a role in today’s report of his decision to step down as CEO of 21st Century Fox.
47,650: Number of people employed by News Corp prior to the company’s split in 2013.
47: Number of subsidiary assets currently owned by News Corp, including two Internet companies, 16 magazines and inserts, 27 newspaper companies (along with more than 100 community newspapers) and two book publishers. 21st Century Fox now is the sole owner of all former News Corp television assets.
$14.1 billion: Rupert Murdoch’s current net worth.
3, 6: Wives and children, respectively. Murdoch has been married three times: Patricia Booker (1956-1967), Anna Murdoch Mann (1967-1999) and Wendi Deng (1999-2013). He has six children: Prudence, Elisabeth, Lachlan, James, Grace and Chloe.