Incumbent CEO of NewsLifeMedia Nicole Sheffield is set to assume the role of CEO of any newly combined News Corporation and NewsLifeMedia sources within the company have told B&T.
A spokeswoman for News Corp said that the company would not be commenting on speculation. This included whether or not NewsLifeMedia and News Corporation would merge into a seamless entity.
Ironically, it was Sharb Farjami, who made a shock exit from his role of COO across both NewsLifeMedia and News Corp yesterday, that gave weight to the notion that discreet management of the lifestyle and news businesses was coming to an end.
With Farjami’s departure of from News Corp yesterday, the way has been cleared for Sheffield to assume the top job although it’s still unclear exactly how the management structure would work with Michael Miller currently in a very hands on role.
Sheffield has been a star performer within News since she took the helm of NLM four-and-a-half years ago and has been widely tipped for a bigger role for years having achieved pretty much everything set out in her KPIs within the lifestyle business.
Taste.com.au has become the jewel in the crown for NLM under Sheffield’s stewardship attracting 4 million unique users a month and very healthy share of the food market.
The only other contender for a CEO’s role is Peter Tonnagh although his ascendency would seem less likely given his recent move into the top job at Foxtel.
The past week has been tumultuous among Australia’s heritage media businesses with speculation that Fairfax is set to axe its print editions which have been churned out since 1831. Seven West Media also had mixed results with its magazine business suffering heavy losses and its flagship Channel Seven also reporting a reduction in revenue.