News Corp. independent directors are fully behind Rupert Murdoch and his management team and are not drawing up plans to promote Chief Operating Officer Chase Carey to the position of CEO, a board member told Reuters on Monday.
The board member and another person familiar with the company's plans also denied a Bloomberg report that suggested the board is considering replacing Murdoch depending on his performance before the British Parliament on Tuesday. The report said the News Corp board met on Monday to discuss replacing Murdoch but both people denied this.
"There was no meeting of independent directors. This board totally supports the top management. We're united behind him," the board member said.
The second person said the board has had a succession plan in place for some time and it regularly reevaluates those plans. "Suggestions that a plan is being accelerated or implemented are inaccurate," the person said.
Carey, a 23-year News Corp. veteran and long-time lieutenant of Rupert Murdoch, is favored by investors in the United States to take control of the business if Murdoch, 80, stands down.
Until a phone hacking scandal at News Corp's UK papers started escalating over the past three weeks, James Murdoch, who is deputy chief operating officer, had been seen as his father's successor.
News Corp was not immediately available for comment.
© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.