Roger Ailes, the mastermind and long-time leader of the hugely profitable Fox News cable network, has signed a new multi-year contract to run the network for parent company 21st Century Fox (NASDAQ:FOXA).
In a statement released Thursday, 21st Century Fox said Ailes will continue to serve as chairman and CEO of Fox News and FOX Business Network. The statement did not specify the length of Ailes’ contract.
Twenty-first Century Fox is the parent company of the FOX Business Network.
Ailes will report jointly to Rupert Murdoch, the company's executive co-chairman, and his newly-elevated sons Lachlan, the company’s incoming executive co-chairman and James, the incoming CEO.
“I am grateful to Rupert Murdoch for taking the risk on Fox News to see it become the number one 24-hour news network in America,” Ailes said in the statement. “I look forward to working with Rupert, Lachlan and James to do my part to help bring 21st Century Fox well into the future.”
The younger Murdochs were promoted earlier this month in moves initiated by Rupert Murdoch, who founded and has cobbled together over several decades the sprawling media and entertainment empire that became 21st Century Fox in 2013 when News Corporation (NASDAQ:NEWS) was divided into two separate companies.
“Nearly two decades ago, Roger took a bold idea rooted in the belief that there was room for more choice in cable news, and – much to all the naysayers’ surprise – through his development of vibrant programming and talent, created a behemoth of a business with one of the most passionate and engaged audiences in the history of television news," Murdoch said in the statement.
Murdoch continued, explaining the long standing relationship between himself and Ailes.
“Roger and I have always had, and will continue to have, a special relationship. Lachlan, James and I are delighted that Roger will be leading key businesses for us and our shareholders for years to come, and he has our unwavering support," he said.
The younger Murdochs, Lachlan and James, commented on the news jointly.
“Roger is an incredibly talented executive and we’re pleased he has accepted our offer to continue his extraordinary record of success at 21st Century Fox," they said in a statement.
Before launching Fox News in 1996, Ailes was an influential political consultant and later president of CNBC.
Shares of 21st Century Fox were little changed in recent action.