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Guardian turnaround mastermind David Pemsel leaving to run Premier League


By John McCarthy, Opinion Editor

October 2, 2019 | 3 min read

David Pemsel is departing The Guardian Media's chief executive role to take on the same mantel at the Premier League.


Premier League taps The Guardian's David Pemsel as CEO

Pemsel, who was previously linked with the Channel 4 top job (which went to Foundry's Alex Mahon), has been hired by the Premier League to succeed Richard Scudamore following his departure last year.

He was approved unanimously by shareholders no doubt attracted to Pemsel's impressive turnaround job at The Guardian (which broke even this year for the first time in 20 years and has set a target of 2 million supporters by 2022).

Bruce Buck, chairman of Chelsea Football Club and chairman of the Premier League Nominations Committee, said: "We are delighted to welcome David to the Premier League. His straightforward style and personal integrity make him an ideal person to lead the business.

"At The Guardian, he has shown strong leadership through a period of change and transformation. Returning the group to profit is an impressive achievement and has demonstrated that he can develop and execute a transformational plan in an ever-changing business landscape. In addition, he has worked with the big players in digital and media and has managed diverse groups and constituencies."

Pemsel added: "The Premier League is the most-watched football league in the world and I am very excited to be a key part of that. As a football fan, I understand just how important the game is to supporters and our national identity and I am honoured to take the helm of such an influential and prestigious organisation.

"I have enjoyed my eight years at Guardian Media Group and want to thank everyone for their support and friendship, but now is the perfect time for me to take on the next challenge. I am really looking forward to meeting the team and working with them on the evolution of the Premier League."

He will join the organisation "no later" than April 2020.

A vacancy now opens at the top of The Guardian. A Guardian News & Media spokesperson told The Drum that the GMG board "will be overseeing the recruitment process for the new chief executive".

Media Premier League The Guardian

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