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ITN announces BBC Studios boss Anna Mallett as new chief executive replacing John Hardie

BBC Studios boss Anna Mallett will replace John Hardie as chief executive of ITN, the production company behind ITV News, Channel 4 News and 5 News, when he steps down at the end of this year.

Mallett, who is currently chief operating officer and managing director of production at BBC Studios, said she was “very honoured” to win the role.

Her exact starting date has not been confirmed, but chief financial officer Bryan Martin will act as interim chief executive with ITN Productions editorial director Chris Shaw as acting editor-in-chief, until she starts.

Mallett said: “Having spent over a decade at the BBC, I have a profound belief in the importance of high-quality news to all of us, and a huge respect for the journalists, crew and production teams whose curiosity and craft lies behind ITN’s reputation.

“And the success and diversification of ITN’s award-winning production arm also means there is now a further strong platform for future growth.

“At a time of immense change in all parts of the media, I am excited about leading the ITN team on the next chapter in an already impressive history.”

Hardie announced in July that he planned to step down at the end of 2018 after nine years in charge at ITN.

Since 2009, Hardie oversaw what ITN described as a “highly-successful turnaround”, returning it to profitability and diversifying the business to achieve record revenues and profits.

But his departure comes after ITN posted a drop in revenue and profits last year, the first time profit has fallen in seven years.

Earlier this year it was revealed that ITN had the highest bonus pay gap of any UK news organisation – a mean gap of 77.2 per cent and a median gap of 50 per cent, both favouring men.

Hardie subsequently made a “public promise” to staff that he would “not receive a penny” in bonus pay unless he hit new gender and diversity targets.

Before joining the BBC, Mallett spent about eight years at global management consultant firm Boston Consulting Group leading projects for FTSE 100 companies, mainly in media and retail.

In her current role, she led the integration of BBC Worldwide and the BBC’s UK production business to create BBC Studios.

ITN said Mallett is joining at a time “of sustained business growth over the last ten years, during which the company has built on its traditional base of high-quality broadcast news to diversify into television production, advertising, sports and corporate content”.

Christy Swords, chair of the ITN Board, said today: Anna is a proven leader, with an extremely impressive commercial background and a fantastic pedigree in TV production.

“Her track record speaks for itself, and she’ll bring energy, expertise and impeccable credentials to the job.

“Anna will join at an exciting period in the company’s history, with ITN’s award-winning journalism stronger than ever and ITN Productions having grown substantially over the last decade.

“The Board is confident that, under Anna’s leadership, ITN is well-positioned to deliver continued growth and further achievements over the coming years.”

Picture: ITN

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