News National Explainer: who is new ABC boss Michelle Guthrie?

Explainer: who is new ABC boss Michelle Guthrie?

Michelle Guthrie will on Tuesday reveal her restructure plans.
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Google executive Michelle Guthrie has become the first woman to secure the top job at Australia’s national broadcaster.

Ms Guthrie will replace outgoing ABC managing director, Mark Scott, they confirmed on Monday morning. She is expected to start in the role in April next year.

Currently based in Singapore in a senior position with Google, Ms Guthrie has plenty of media experience to draw on from her time working her way up through Rupert Murdoch pay-TV outlets BSkyB (in the UK), Foxtel, and STAR Group in Hong Kong, where she secured her first CEO gig in 2003.

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Aside from all that first-hand knowledge of how the ABC’s enemies operate, Ms Guthrie brings plenty more to the table – in her role with Google, she managed the tech giant’s relationships with marketing and advertising firms across Asia.

Ms Guthrie is said to have beaten the likes of former News Corp Australia chief executive Kim Williams and SBS managing director Michael Ebeid for the role.

Where it all began

A graduate with a Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Law at the University of Sydney, Ms Guthrie began her career in 1989 as a lawyer at Allen, Allen & Hemsley and has achieved plenty of recognition for her work since.

Mark Scott
Ms Guthrie has been named as the possible successor to outgoing ABC director Mark Scott.

In 2005, she followed up her naming as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum with the Veuve Clicquot Hong Kong Businesswoman of the Year award.

Just before joining Google in 2011, Ms Guthrie served from 2007 to 2009 as the managing director and senior advisor of media, entertainment, communications and technology firm Providence Equity Partners.

She also currently serves as a non-executive director of entertainment group MTG and sits on the board of directors for Auckland International Airport Limited in New Zealand, Pacific Star Network in Melbourne and aid agency Plan International in Hong Kong.

She has at least one interest in common with the Prime Minister she will be reliant on for funding – exhibiting a fondness for excitedly waffling about innovation. See her interview at the 2014 Women In Tech Stockholm conference below.

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