News Corp's Sky Pays Rupert's Daughter Liz Murdoch 40% Less For TV Shows

BSkyB paid Liz Murdoch’s Shine Group £6 million ($9.3 million) for programming last year, the company said in its annual report. That is 40% less than the £10 million it paid Murdoch, sister of non-executive chairman James Murdoch, and her Shine Group last year. Shows that Shine, the UK’s biggest independent TV producer, has made for Sky include a revival of 80s game show Gladiators.

Sky’s directors appear confident the company’s share price is going to rise further. In June News Corp bid £7.8 billion for the 61% of Sky it doesn’t own. News Corp’s offer was rebuffed by Sky, which is holding out for 800p a share. Jeremy Darroch, CEO of BSkyB, has more than tripled the number of shares he owns in Sky to 230,046 compared with 60,000 shares last summer. This means Darroch could collect £6.6 million if the 800p-a-share deal does go through. CFO Andrew Griffith, 39, has been similarly bullish, acquiring 52,000 shares on top of the 5,000 he already owned. Last month, News Corp’s deputy chairman Chase Carey appeared to rule out increasing the offer.

Darroch pocketed a 14.6% pay rise in the year to June 30, bumping up his total package to £2.7 million. Darroch hit his performance targets, triggering a £1.7 million bonus. Combined with his £866,250 salary and other benefits, the CEO’s total pay was lifted up from £2.3 million.

Non-executive chairman James Murdoch’s £87,500 salary looked positively stingy by comparison. Don’t worry. He’s paid £6.7 million annually as chairman and CEO of News Corp, Europe and Asia.

Total BSkyB revenue increased by 11.1% to £5.9 billion. Adjusted operating profit – stripping out any exceptional or one-off items – increased by 9.6% On average, Sky customers pay £508 annually to be subscribers, a 9.5% increase year on year.

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