Rupert Murdoch, the legendary media mogul of Australian descent, said this week that he would be leaving his position as chairman of the board of Fox Corp. and News Corp.
The move will become official in November, according to CNBC, capping off a career in media that started in 1952 when Murdoch assumed control of The News, a small South Australian newspaper based in Adelaide that belonged to his late father, Sir Keith Murdoch, who was one of Australia’s most illustrious newspapermen.
Murdoch, 92, will be named chairman emeritus of all the companies in his network of media properties spanning four continents. He will continue to serve as Fox Corp.’s executive chair and CEO, while his son Lachlan Murdoch will take over as News Corp.’s only chairman.
Forbes magazine says that the Murdoch family has a net worth of $17.4bn right now.
The Australian Financial Review says that Lachlan, who was born in 1971, will have a net worth of about $3.3bn by 2023.
“Both our companies and I are in good health,” the elder Murdoch wrote in a note to workers that CNBC saw.
“We have a lot of reasons to be hopeful about the next few years. I’m one of them, and I plan to be here for them. But the fight for freedom of speech and, in the end, freedom of thought has not ever been harder.”
He states that his father “firmly believed in freedom” and that his successor Lachlan “is totally dedicated to the cause.” His father controlled Australian newspapers that contributed to the establishment of Rupert Murdoch’s media giant.
“Bureaucracies that only care about themselves want to quiet people who question their origins and goals. People who aren’t in the elite class are looked down upon by the elite,” he says.
“Most of the media works with these elites and spreads political stories instead of looking for the truth.”
The AP said in response, Lachlan Murdoch stated, “We are appreciative that he will take on the role of chairman emeritus and are confident he will continue to offer both companies invaluable counsel.”
AP says that it’s ironic that this week, Murdoch historian and author Michael Wolff is launching a book called “The End of Fox News. In it, he speculates about what will happen to the network when Murdoch, who has been in charge for seven decades, dies.”
The story is very similar to the hit TV show Succession, which was about a family in the media.
Rupert Murdoch has four marriages under his belt; his first three spouses gave birth to six children.