Granada starts search for corporate PR chief

Granada Media Group has begun the search for a new corporate affairs director because the incumbent, Chris Hopson, is set to move to a senior management role within the company.

Granada Media Group has begun the search for a new corporate

affairs director because the incumbent, Chris Hopson, is set to move to

a senior management role within the company.



Headhunters Taylor Bennett are understood to be at an advanced stage in

the search for Hopson’s replacement.



A decision on the appointment - which is believed to carry a salary in

excess of pounds 100,000 and a seat on the media company’s board - is

expected within the next four weeks.



Negotiations between Granada and Hopson are still continuing but he is

believed to have been lined up to head a new business venture for the

Granada Media Group. He will take on a general management, rather than a

public reltions role.



Granada’s four existing businesses are TV rentals, hotels, restaurants

and services, and media.



Hopson’s replacement will be at the helm of one of the country’s largest

PR teams, employing 50 staff. Because there is no central PR resource

for the parent company Hopson is often called on to advise Granada chief

executive Charles Allen on corporate affairs issues.



Hopson is a former chief executive of the SDP and a one-time policy

adviser to David Mellor when he was Secretary of State for National

Heritage.



He joined Granada in 1993 as director of public affairs.



Granada will be keen to replace him with someone with strong public

affairs and media relations skills. The role of corporate affairs

director ranges from publicising Britain’s most popular soap, Coronation

Street, to dealing with ITV licence renewals and ownership issues.



The media group is also joint owner of the new OnDigital service and the

Manchester United pay TV station. Its most recent annual results

revealed a 36 per cent leap in profits for Granada Media to pounds 255

million.



Neither Granada Media Group nor Hopson were available for comment.



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