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Top executives face the chop


Michael Green is to relinquish CEO role once Granada merger is approved
Running a company is a thankless task now that chairmen and CEOs are regarded with suspicion not admiration. In a further affront, in the UK at least, any CEO who makes a deal to become chairman of a merged company may well face the chop.

Top executives at merging companies will be scrabbling to keep their jobs if the Carlton/Granada deal is anything to go by. It seems whoever misses the CEO spot and ends up as chairman is likely to be ousted by shareholders citing the Higgs Review into the role and effectiveness of non-executive directors.

Investor UK pitted itself against corporate UK last month and demanded that Carlton's chief executive be prevented from becoming chairman of the merged ITV company. The campaign included Fidelity, UBS GAM, Isis Asset Management and Deutsche Asset Management. Michael Green will relinquish his role as chief executive at Carlton once the merger with Granada is approved by shareholders. It took investors less than two weeks from the Competition Commission's approval of the merger on October 7 to force Green to opt out of the new role.

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