Hong Kong -- News Corp. saw some new developments in its
Asia business prospects last week, losing the top executive at its Star TV enterprise and
forming an alliance with Singapore Telecommunications.
After a mere 18 months on the job, Star TV executive
chairman and CEO Gareth Chang resigned "to explore other business
opportunities," News Corp. said. Chang's hiring had been billed as a means for the
company to use his connections to extend its business ties into mainland China.
His original appointment as chairman was proceeded by the
exit of Gary Davey, who had been CEO of the network group and direct-to-home platform.
News Corp. co-chief operating officer Chase Carey and
executive vice president James Murdoch are now interim co-chairmen of Star. Bruce
Churchill, Star's deputy CEO and COO, is assuming day-to-day operational responsibility
for the company.
In other news, News Corp. officials announced they are
exploring broadband-Internet and wireless businesses throughout Asia with Singapore
Originally, News Corp.'s announced alliance was linked to
Singapore Telecom's bid to acquire Cable & Wireless HKT Ltd., the Hong Kong telco. The
pact would have seen News Corp. invest some $1 billion in SingTel if it won the bidding
war. Even after SingTel lost that contest, News Corp. reiterated its desire to pursue
joint ventures with the Singapore company.