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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 November 2006, 09:54 GMT
In quotes: Grade joins ITV
Michael Grade has resigned as BBC chairman to join rival broadcaster ITV as its new boss.

BBC executives and key figures in the media industry have been giving their reaction to Mr Grade's departure.

MARK THOMPSON, BBC DIRECTOR GENERAL

I know that some of you will find Michael Grade's decision and its timing surprising.

I believe that over the past two and a half years he has been an excellent chairman of the BBC.

He played a critical role in charter renewal and helped design a system of governance that I am confident will stand the test of time.

The new BBC Trust will start as scheduled at the start of next year. We will work with the governors and trustees to ensure a smooth transition.

SIR PETER BURT, ITV CHAIRMAN

Michael Grade will provide a strong and focused leadership at a critical time in ITV's history.

The company will benefit enormously from his unrivalled broadcasting experience.

ITV's challenges, particularly on the programming and advertising side, are considerable.

Michael Grade's particular blend of skills will provide both the continuity of experienced media management and the creative leadership which ITV needs to move forward rapidly.

STEWART PURVIS, FORMER ITN CHIEF EXECUTIVE

He has got extraordinary freedom but he has to answer to shareholders and the City. It is a tough call.

JOHN WHITTINGDALE, CHAIRMAN OF COMMONS CULTURE COMMITTEE

We need plurality and we need to have strong TV companies. A strong ITV is in everyone's interests.

It is an extraordinary blow (to the BBC).

It makes a headache for the government, which will have to go back to the drawing board.






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