John Hardie, who has led British news and multimedia content provider ITN for nearly a decade, has decided to step down from his role within the company.
Hardie joined the London-based company as CEO in 2009, replacing current Knowledgemotion chair Mark Wood and overseeing a successful turnaround in which ITN returned to profitability, boasting £126.4 million (US$167 million) in revenues and £5.8 million (US$7.7 million) in operating profit in 2017. The year-ago period also saw the production firm winning 50 broadcast commissions, 62 awards and broadcasting nearly 200 hours of content across the UK.
He joined ITN from The Walt Disney Company where he had spent eight years as managing director of Walt Disney Television in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). During his time there, Hardie led a period of growth and profitability for Disney Channels, increasing distribution from nine million to 45 million households, and expanding the number of channels from seven to 26.
Prior to joining Disney, Hardie was commercial director at ITV Network Centre between 1997 and 2001, where he was responsible for marketing, on-air promotion, business affairs, ITV2 and Internet activities. He also worked at Proctor & Gamble between 1983 and 1997, the last three years as MD, running the European cosmetics and toiletries business.
Hardie will remain with ITN until the end of the year to support a smooth transition. The company is currently searching for his successor.
“It has been my honor and privilege to lead this unique organization for nearly a decade, working alongside some of the very best in the business. But the time has come for me to start the next chapter of my career and pursue some long-held ambitions and it is absolutely the right time for a new CEO to take the reins,” Hardie said in a statement.
ITN is made up of two major divisions, including a broadcast news arm, which produces daily news programs for ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5; and ITN Productions, which has produced such series and documentaries as Netflix’s Drug Lords, Channel 4′s Interview with a Murderer, Smithsonian Channel’s Tsunami: 10 Years On and the Oscar-nominated film Watani: My Homeland.