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Carolyn McCall to step down as chief executive of Guardian Media Group

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Guardian Media Group plc (“GMG”) today announces that chief executive Carolyn McCall is to leave the business.

Carolyn will step down after four years in the role, and 24 years with the group, to become chief executive of easyJet.

She will leave GMG later in the year and an announcement regarding succession plans will be made in due course.

Carolyn joined the Guardian in 1986 as a planner in the marketing department. At Guardian News & Media (“GNM”) she held the positions of advertising director, commercial director, managing director and chief executive before being promoted to chief executive of parent organisation GMG in 2006.

During her tenure at GNM and GMG she oversaw the launch of Guardian Unlimited (now, as, one of the world’s leading news websites), the move to the innovative Berliner format for the Guardian and Observer, the relocation to new premises at Kings Place in North London, and the successful diversification of GMG’s portfolio. This included the partial sale of Auto Trader publisher Trader Media Group for approximately £700 million, the investment in leading B2B media group Emap, and the establishment of an investment portfolio worth more than £200 million.

In 2008 Carolyn was awarded the OBE for services to women in business, and was named Veuve Clicquot Business Woman of the Year.

Carolyn McCall said: “The Guardian has been my second family for a quarter of a century, and I feel incredibly privileged to be part of such a wonderful and unique organisation. However, the chance to lead a FTSE company of easyJet’s calibre is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The business has a superb brand and a great future ahead of it, and I’m looking forward to driving its continued success. I will leave GMG knowing that our journalism has never been more influential or widely read, and with complete confidence that its financial position is secure.”

Amelia Fawcett, chair of GMG, said: “Carolyn has done an outstanding job as CEO, leading the company through a period of unprecedented change. She is widely respected not just here but across the industry, and her dedication over 24 years to GMG, the Guardian, our people and our businesses has been total and unfailing. We are stronger for it, and we wish her every success.”

Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief of GNM, said: “Carolyn has been an inspired and visionary leader of the Guardian, the Observer and GMG. She has unwaveringly supported our journalists and, with GMG, worked tirelessly to develop a highly successful media company to protect and nourish our editorial output and aims. She is a digital pioneer, a lovely colleague and a good friend. We’re going to miss her a great deal.”

Liz Forgan, chair of the Scott Trust, said: “Carolyn has been an inspirational leader and a tremendous champion of the Guardian. We owe her a great deal and wish her every success in the future.”


Further information: Chris Wade 020 3353 4041