BREAKING | Seven CEO Tim Worner resigns, to be replaced by James Warburton

Channel 7 Chairman Kerry Stokes has sent out a surprise e-mail to staff this morning

“Dear all,

Last night I accepted Tim Worner’s resignation. Tim and I have been talking about his succession for some time. Tim has put his heart and soul into the business for the past 25 years and I am incredibly grateful fo rhis hard work and his loyalty to the Seven team.

Today we are welcoming James Warburton back to Seven as CEO.

James Warburton famously left Seven for the Ten network after growing impatient for then CEO David Leckie to resign.

Worner’s resignation come after a board meeting was held this week.

This is the official announcement from Seven:

Friday 16 August – Kerry Stokes AC, the Chairman of Seven West Media, today announced the appointment of James Warburton as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Seven West Media Limited, succeeding Tim Worner who has tendered his resignation. James will start as CEO of Seven West Media effective immediately.

“This is an exciting time for Seven as we welcome James back to the company,” Mr Stokes said. “James has extensive experience in the industry with knowledge across media, advertising, sports administration, marketing and particularly sales. His passion and energy will reinvigorate the team. We look forward to the contribution he will make.”

James Warburton said: “I am delighted to be returning to Seven and I am excited about the opportunities that lie ahead to continue to build the business. The foundation of the business is a powerful combination of assets underpinned by outstanding content from Seven Studios, News and our partners in AFL, Cricket, horse racing and the Olympic Games.”

The Chairman thanked Tim Worner for his contribution to the business over many years. “I know I speak on behalf of the Board and all of our people in thanking Tim for his hard work.” he said. 

“Our industry is more dynamic today than ever, experiencing rapidly evolving market conditions which continue to present us with challenges and opportunities. In reviewing the requirements for the company, the Board has been considering the right mix of skills and experience required to take advantage of opportunities and accelerate into its next phase of growth.

“Tim has been a tireless leader at Seven for more than two decades and has been Chief Executive Officer for the past six years. All parties agree now is the time for change. We are fortunate that James was available to commence immediately.”

Tim Worner said he was proud of the team he leaves at Seven, a team that has delivered leadership in the television sector for 12 consecutive years. “I would like to thank Kerry and the Board for the opportunity they provided me, and their ongoing support and counsel,” Mr Worner said. “It’s with mixed emotion that I tender my resignation, however Seven – a company I love – is a very different company now from the one I joined 25 years ago. It’s changed faster than ever in these last few years and that’s down to the hard work of the best team in the business. I sincerely thank the team and I wish them absolutely nothing but continued success.”

The Full Year Financial results presentation remains on the 20th of August. The company reaffirms guidance from the May 21st Trading Update.

7 News reporter Chris Reason has interviewed Stokes for tonight’s news bulletin and obtained this interesting quote;

"We made a decision that at this point in time it was in the company’s best interest and Tim’s best interest if he resigned." - Kerry Stokes