@ CES: News Corp.’s Chernin Clarifies Exec Internet Roles

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I wasn’t sure what to make of the announcement earlier this week that Jeremy Philips had been appointed EVP , office of the chairman, to “focus on acquisitions and strategy across the company and will oversee Internet investments.” It sounded like FIM president Ross Levinsohn was being frozen out of internet M&A or superceded. But News Corp. COO Peter Chernin says that isn’t the case. Chernin and I spoke briefly following the DirecTV press conference late Thursday.
Asked what the appointment of an internet M&A strategist meant, he replied: “It was actually sort of misleading. Basically, he’s head of strat-planning for the company. Ross will continue to be, sort of, head of internet operations. … Basically, the way the company works is the divisional heads should supervise their own M&A and then we have a sort of strat planning head for the whole corporation.”

Philips will not be the conduit for all of the M&A activity across News Corp. “I would assume that most of the M&A stuff about the internet will go through Ross but some of it may come through him.”

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