Fox News co-presidents signed to long-term contracts
(Corrects attribution of announcement to Fox News)
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Fox News said on Wednesday that co-presidents Jack Abernethy and Bill Shine have signed new multiyear contracts, deals that put to rest some uncertainty about the cable channel's direction after the departure of former Chairman Roger Ailes.
The two company veterans were named co-presidents in August after Ailes resigned. Former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson sued Ailes in July, claiming sexual harassment. Ailes has denied the charges but Fox News parent 21st Century Fox settled the case on Ailes' behalf for $20 million on Sept. 6.
"Jack and Bill have been instrumental in Fox News’ continued dominance in the ratings and historic earnings performance," Rupert Murdoch, executive chairman of 21st Century Fox, said in a statement. "I am delighted they’ve each signed new deals, ensuring stability and leadership to help guide the network for years to come."
Terms of the contracts were not disclosed.
The departure of Ailes, who is credited with turning Fox News into a ratings powerhouse, raised questions about the network's ability to keep talent and its wide ratings lead over competitors.
Lachlan Murdoch, co-executive chairman of 21st Century Fox and Rupert Murdoch's son, told investors at a Bank of America Merrill Lynch media conference on Wednesday that it would be "foolish" to change Fox News' strategy.
(Reporting by Anna Driver; Editing by Matthew Lewis)
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