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Nine’s digital chief CEO exits

Nine Network’s digital business Mi9 has appointed a managing director after the departure of its CEO for an emerging Australian video-on-demand group.

Mark BrittCurrent chief executive Mark Britt (pictured) is leaving Mi9 as the digital arm of the Australian broadcaster restructures in response to “an ever-developing environment within the company”.

Britt is thought to be leaving to head up the internet TV and VOD arm of Australian digital firm Catcha Group. He said he had been “presented with a rare opportunity to start a new business that only comes along once in a lifetime”.

As a result of the departure, Alex Parsons is re-joining Nine as MD of Nine Digital following Britt’s departure. He is currently CEO of Nine JV RateCity, but will now “progressively transition into his new role”, Nine said.

Britt will remain an advisor to the Nine Entertainment Company group until March 31, 2016.

He is credited with overseeing Nine’s investment in Mi9 while it was a joint venture with Microsoft, and lead its full integration into the broadcast group after Nine increased its holding to 100% last year.

“Mark is well regarded as one of the pre-eminent thought leaders in the digital space, so I am pleased that we have been able to retain his insights and guidance into the future,” said Nine CEO David Gyngell. “I would like to thank him for his contribution and wish him well in his future endeavours.”

Gyngell welcomed his replacement, Parsons, saying: “I’m pleased to have Alex return to the digital business. He has been a part of our company for many years and I’m confident the transition to the new management structure will proceed smoothly.”

The news comes soon after BBC Worldwide hired Nine’s Emren Kara, who was general counsel for Mi9, as its legal chief in Australia and New Zealand.

Meanwhile, Nine’s new SVOD business StreamCo is moving “rapidly from a technology business into a creative content business as it approaches a launch later in the current financial year”, Nine added.

It is headed up by Mike Sneesby, who reports into Gyngell, while broader NEC strategic digital responsibilities have been handed to Melanie Kansil’s NEC Group Strategy team.