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25/04/2001

GRANADA AND CARLTON TO ALIGN ITV AND ONDIGITAL

CARLTON Communications and Granada have announced proposals for a new partnership to align ITV and ONdigital - creating an integrated free-to-air, pay television and online media business.
Harnessing one of the most powerful brands in the UK, the new ITV will include ITV, ITV2, a new ITV Sport Channel to launch in August, ONdigital, which will be renamed ITV Digital and ITV.com, which will launch later this year.
Aligning Carlton and Granada's ITV assets will allow more effective management and is expected to yield total cost efficiencies for the two companies together of £20m per annum in the second full year.
Stuart Prebble will be appointed Chief Executive of ITV with overall responsibility for ITV free-to-air and pay channels and ITV.com. Rob Fyfe will be appointed Managing Director of ITV Digital and David Liddiment will continue to be ITV Director of Programmes and, as ITV Director of Channels, will assume wider editorial responsibility for ITV digital channels.
Charles Allen, Chairman of Granada, said: “This is the most fundamental change in British broadcasting since the launch of multi-channel television. Granada and Carlton have forged a new partnership in ITV, the UK's most popular television channel, and are now bringing together the tremendous brand strength of ITV with the UK's digital terrestrial broadcasting platform.”
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