Emma Scott to leave Freesat

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Scott-EmmaAfter seven years, Emma Scott (pictured) has announced that she is to stand down from her post as managing director of Freesat. 

Emma has overseen the growth of Freesat from the start, initially as launch director at the BBC before becoming managing director in 2007. Freesat’s subscription free television service has brought a series of innovations to the UK’s important free to air market and it is now used in nearly 2 million homes, according to Freesat.  Emma will leave her position at the end of the year.

Freesat chairman Bal Samra said: “Emma has been an outstanding managing director, translating an idea for a start-up into the established and successful business that Freesat is today. In doing so, she and the Freesat team have delivered a number of industry firsts for viewers in the free to air market, building on Britain’s heritage in broadcasting and technology. Her commitment and belief in the importance of ‘free’ TV has been unstinting. While Freesat’s shareholders and team will greatly miss Emma’s professionalism, drive and tenacity, we wish her every success in her future career.”

Emma Scott added: “I am immensely proud of what we have achieved at Freesat since our inception seven years ago. Freesat now offers viewers who do not wish to pay a monthly subscription a state of the art connected television service. That means more than 200 TV and radio channels; a strong and growing HD portfolio; personal video recorder functionality; a full range of catch-up services (BBC iPlayer, ITV Player, 4oD, Demand 5); easy access to services such as YouTube, Curzon Cinema BBC News and BBC Sport; our Showcase TV recommendations service; the Freesat iOS and Android app and a ‘roll back’ TV guide.

“Freesat has built this service, now used in almost 2 million homes, by embracing new ways of curating content and by harnessing technology that looks to the future. I am particularly proud of Showcase, the only editorially driven recommendations service on a UK TV platform, and of the Freetime connected TV service. Above all, I would like to thank the amazing team at Freesat, and Freesat’s shareholders the BBC and ITV, for the strong support they have given me, without which it would have been impossible to achieve so much in this exciting and highly competitive market.

“Creating a successful new TV platform has been an exhilarating journey but it is now time for me to seek new challenges in the digital media industries.”

Alistair Thom will become managing director of Freesat from January 1, 2015.  Alistair is currently Freesat’s finance director and company secretary, and has been with the business since 2011. Alistair previously worked at KPMG as a consultant; earlier in his career he spent five years at BSkyB. Alistair said: “I am looking forward to taking on this new role and working with the Board of Freesat as we continue to develop this valuable business.”

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