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Former Banker David Clementi Named as Next BBC Chairman

Variety logo Variety 1/10/2017 Leo Barraclough
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The U.K. government has announced that David Clementi, the former deputy governor of the Bank of England, will be the next chairman of state-owned broadcaster the BBC.

Clementi, who will take up his BBC role on April 1, worked at private bank Kleinwort Benson for 22 years, and was its chief executive from 1994 to 1997. He served as deputy governor of the Bank of England from 1997 to 2002, and was chairman of financial services group Prudential from 2002 to 2008.

Last year, Clementi conducted a review of the way the BBC was governed. This recommended that the present governing body, the BBC Trust, would be replaced by a new unitary board, reporting to media regulator Ofcom. This recommendation was accepted by the government. It will be the first time that the BBC has faced external regulation in its 95-year history.

In September, BBC Trust chairwoman Rona Fairhead said she would not apply to be chair of the new board. Two other candidates were on the short-list: Deirdre Hutton, the chair of the Civil Aviation Authority, and John Makinson, the chair of publishers Penguin Random House.

In a statement, the BBC’s director-general, Tony Hall, said: “I am delighted that Sir David Clementi has been announced as the preferred candidate. I am really looking forward to working with him.”

The U.K.’s culture secretary, Karen Bradley, who recommended Clementi’s appointment, said: “I am confident that Sir David will provide the strong leadership necessary for the BBC to remain the world’s best broadcaster.”

Clementi will appear before the U.K. Parliament’s Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee for a pre-appointment hearing on Jan. 17.

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