John Smith is stepping down after eight years as CEO of the BBC’s commercial arm, BBC Worldwide (BBCWW), with BBC Audio & Music director Tim Davie (pictured) succeeding him.
Smith told staff he is leaving the BBC to pursue “new opportunities in the commercial sector,” although details have yet to be unveiled. Davie will succeed Smith as BBCWW CEO from December 1.
BBC director-general, George Entwistle said Smith “has turned the company into a truly global phenomenon delivering a fantastic financial injection into the BBC every year. He leaves the company ideally set up for the future challenges it faces in a digital world.”
On the appointment of Davie, he added: “Tim has done an excellent job leading the BBC Audio & Music division and has a fantastic vision for the opportunities that lie ahead for BBC Worldwide.
“Building on John’s success, Tim will now take the BBC’s commercial arm into the next chapter of its development.”
Davie has been the BBC’s director of Audio & Music since 2008, before which he was director of the BBC’s Marketing, Communications & Audiences division from April 2005.
In a statement, he said: “BBC Worldwide is an outstanding business that plays a unique role in building the BBC’s global reputation and it is an honor to be asked to lead it.”