Rupert Murdoch steps down as chair of Fox News and News Corp

More than 70 years after taking over his first newspaper, media mogul Rupert Murdoch is retiring, leaving his empire to his son, as ITV News Correspondent John Ray reports

Rupert Murdoch is stepping down from his role as chairman of Fox and News Corp, he announced on Thursday.

His son, Lachlan Murdoch, will become sole chairman of both companies after their annual general meetings in mid-November.

Lachlan will continue as executive chairman and chief executive of Fox Corporation, while his father Rupert will be appointed chairman emeritus of each company.

In a memo to staff, the 92-year-old media mogul said: "For my entire professional life, I have been engaged daily with news and ideas, and that will not change".

He added: "But the time is right for me to take on different roles, knowing that we have truly talented teams.”

Passing on the baton after a career spanning seven decades, Murdoch described his son as "a passionate, principled leader."

Lachlan Murdoch said: “On behalf of the Fox and News Corp boards of directors, leadership teams, and all the shareholders who have benefited from his hard work, I congratulate my father on his remarkable 70-year career.

“We thank him for his vision, his pioneering spirit, his steadfast determination, and the enduring legacy he leaves to the companies he founded and countless people he has impacted.

“We are grateful that he will serve as chairman emeritus and know he will continue to provide valued counsel to both companies.”

Rupert Murdoch and his sons, Lachlan (left) and James Murdoch, who have had significant roles in the family business. Credit: AP

Rupert Murdoch got into the newspaper business in the 1950s and became a major Hollywood executive in 1985 when he purchased Twentieth Century Fox from oilman Marvin Davis for $600 million.

In 1986, Murdoch got into the TV business after he purchased several US television stations and created Fox Broadcasting.

Fox News launched in 1996 as a startup competitor to CNN. It eventually became the number one cable news channel in America and a bastion for Republican talking points and falsehoods.

Broadcaster Piers Morgan was among those paying tribute to the media mogul on social media.

The 58-year-old has worked for a succession of Mr Murdoch’s outlets, and aged 29 he was appointed as the editor of the now defunct newspaper the News of the World by the media mogul.

Writing on X, formerly known as Twitter, Morgan said: “Rupert Murdoch has been a bold, brilliant, visionary leader whose audacity & tenacity built a magnificently successful global media empire.

“It’s been a privilege to work for him on and off for the past 30 years, and an ongoing masterclass in journalism & business. Thanks Boss!”

Morgan was the editor of the former tabloid newspaper until he jumped ship to the Daily Mirror, which he edited from 1995 to 2004, before signing a deal with Mr Murdoch’s News Corp and Fox News Media in 2021.

The agreement led to him doing columns for the New York Post and The Sun along with presenting Piers Morgan Uncensored, which airs on News UK’s newly launched channel TalkTV.

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