Rupert and James Murdoch are to appear in front of British Parliament Tuesday for questioning over the phone-hacking scandal, and at least one of them will be fighting for their job. Rupert Murdoch could be stripped of his duties as CEO if he performs poorly tomorrow in front of parliament, Bloomberg's Andy Fixmer, Ronald Grover, and Jeffrey McCracken report. Executives from News Corp. watched Murdoch prepare for the hearing and grew concerned over his ability to handle questions. "Board members and executives at News Corp. (NWSA) are concerned about Murdoch’s ability to contain the fallout from the scandal," according to Bloomberg's report. Current News Corp. COO Chase Carey is the leading man to succeed Murdoch in the position. News Corp.'s independent directors, who make up 9 out of 16 board seats, weighed naming Carey to CEO on Monday, and "discussed whether the stock market and investors would react favorably to a change." Murdoch would remain as chairman of the company.
The Guardian profiled Carey on July 12 when speculation was starting to swirl about who could replace the elder Murdoch as CEO. The profile said at the time that Carey was the shareholders favorite candidate in case anything else happened to Murdoch and he was forced to step down. The profile described him as "a man focused on squeezing as much cash as possible from the media giant's TV shows, films and print titles" and "a straight-talking New Yorker who would rather watch a Yankees game with a beer in his hand than socialise with film executives or film stars." Carey, pictured below, is also the News Corp. president and deputy chairman, behind Rupert Murdoch.
Update: During the preparation of this post, Reuters' Yinka Adegoke contacted News Corp. for comment and they denied the Bloomberg story.
News Corp’s board is fully behind CEO Rupert Murdoch, board source tells Reuters. Two sources also say the company’s independent directors did not meet today to discuss elevating Chase Carey to CEO. A source also tells Reuters a succession plan is in place and it is regularly re-evaluated but any suggestion that a plan is accelerated is inaccurate.
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