The BBC has tapped industry veteran Peter Salmon to run their new production division BBC Studios, the corporation announced on Monday. He will take up post as the first Director of BBC Studios later this year.
Announced in 2014 alongside plans to abolish the WOCC, BBC Studios is envisioned as a full service production company that will eventually supply content to all broadcasters, rather than just the BBC. That plan, however, requires approval from the BBC Trust and Peter Salmon will be responsible, alongside Danny Cohen and the BBC’s Directors in the nations, for formulating the right structure, leadership team and remit for BBC Studios.
As a result of this appointment Salmon, who served as Controller of BBC One between 1997 and 2000, is exiting his current post as BBC Director, England. BBC Radio boss Helen Boaden will take over from Salmon in Salford, whilst also retaining her currently responsibilities. Neither execs will be getting a pay-bump as a result of their new posts. The move effectively eliminates on executive post at the BBC at a time when the corporation is facing further budget cuts.
“I’m confident that Peter will bring all the energy and creativity he’s shown at BBC England to this job. He’s got a great track record as a programme maker and a creative leader and I believe he’s the right person to help shape and mould BBC Studios”, said BBC Director-General Tony Hall. “I’ve now asked him to work closely with the rest of the BBC to ensure Studios draws on talent from across the Corporation.”
“This is a great opportunity to build a new model for BBC Production and work with some of the best people in the business. Our in-house teams across the UK are responsible for some of the most popular and high-quality television in the world”, added Peter Salmon. “Programmes like Strictly, Doctor Who, Luther and Frozen Planet show that they can compete with producers anywhere and I want to build on that success. I’ve loved my time starting a successful creative community at BBC North in Salford and then with the BBC England team but this was too important an opportunity to pass over. I’m looking forward to getting down to work with new colleagues soon.”