back to top

This Google Executive Will Be Paid $900,000 A Year To Run The ABC

Michelle Guthrie will be paid $900,000 a year when she takes over from Mark Scott.

Posted on

Guthrie, who will be paid $900,000 a year, will join the ABC in April 2016 for a one-month handover with current managing director Mark Scott.

"Michelle brings a unique local and global view to the role, having grown up in Sydney and worked at senior levels here and around the world," ABC chairman James Spigelman said when announcing Guthrie's appointment on Monday morning.

"She brings to the ABC her business acumen, record in content-making across an array of platforms, a deep understanding of audience needs and corporate responsibility for promoting issues like diversity."

Guthrie comes to the ABC from Google, where she is currently the firm's managing director for Agencies in the Asia-Pacific.

Before joining the online search giant in 2011, she worked as the CEO of STAR, a Hong Kong-based News Corp subsidiary, London-based media company BSkyB as the managing director at private equity firm, Providence Equity Partners and as an executive for Foxtel.

Former News Corp CEO Kim Williams, current SBS Managing Director Michael Ebeid and Foxtel CEO Richard Freudenstein were all considered to be in the running for the job, but the ABC settled on Guthrie last week.

"The ABC Board made this appointment following a thorough local and international search that produced an outstanding field of candidates. Michelle is an exceptional media professional with strong content, operational and board experience within internationally-respected media companies," Spigelman said.

Guthrie will also maintain responsibility for the ABC's editorial content, despite a call from prime minister Malcolm Turnbull to split the editor-in-chief and managing director roles.

"The new managing mirector will inherit an unbalanced and largely centralised public broadcaster which has become a protection racket for the left ideology," Abetz said.

"The Ultimo-centric ABC has become engrossed in group think so much so that there is complete denial of any problems."

"In recent times, the leadership has failed to address the real concerns that have been expressed by the Australian people about the direction of the ABC. The new Managing Director must restore editorial balance to ensure that the Australian people can regain confidence in the organisation."

Abetz also accused the ABC of conducting a "lettuce-leaf" review of Q&A, and of showing bias in its coverage of the ongoing marriage equality debate.

Rob Stott is a news editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Sydney.

Contact Rob Stott at

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.