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He will take over from Mark Thompson after the Olympics and will be paid £450,000 a year, a little over half his predecessor’s package.
Announcing the appointment, BBC Trust Chairman Lord Patten said:”George is a creative leader for a creative organisation. His experience of making and delivering great programmes that audiences love – built up through many years of working for the Corporation – will prove invaluable as he and his team work to ensure the BBC remains the greatest broadcaster in the world.
“Above all George is passionate about the BBC, is committed to its public service ethos and has a clear vision for how it can harness the creativity and commitment of its staff to continue to serve audiences in ever more innovative ways.”
George Entwistle said: “I’m delighted that the Chairman and Trustees have decided I’m the right person for the job. And I’m very excited about all that lies ahead. I love the BBC and it’s a privilege to be asked to lead it into the next stage of its creative life.”
Among the disappointed candidates is Ed Richards the head of Ofcom who entered the competition at the last possible minute. It would have been a controversial appointment not least because of Ofcom’s perceived hostility to BSkyB the BBC’s rival broadcaster.