Former Australian prime minister Tony Abbott nominated to Fox Corp's board

The development comes as media magnate Rupert Murdoch steps down as chairman of the company

Former Australian prime minister Tony Abbott may be joining Fox Corporation subject to shareholder approval. EPA
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Fox Corporation, which owns Fox News and other television channels, has nominated two members to its board including former Australian prime minister Tony Abbott.

The company also nominated Margaret “Peggy” Johnson, the current chief executive of US-based technology company Magic Leap, Fox said in a statement on Friday.

The nominees will be considered by shareholders during Fox’s annual general meeting this year. They would replace Jacques Nasser and Anne Dias.

“I welcome Peggy Johnson and Tony Abbott’s nominations to the board. They bring skills, experience and perspectives that will contribute to the board and benefit Fox,” said Lachlan Murdoch, executive chairman and chief executive of the company.

Mr Abbott served as the 28th prime minister of Australia from 2013 to 2015. He was the leader of the Liberal Party of Australia from 2009 to 2015 and a member of parliament from 1994 to 2019. Mr Abbott has also been an adviser to the UK Board of Trade since 2020.

Ms Johnson has been chief executive of Magic Leap, a company that specialises in augmented reality technology, since August 2020.

She was also executive vice president of business development at Microsoft and previously served as executive vice president of Qualcomm Technology. Ms Johnson has also served on the board of directors of BlackRock, the world’s biggest asset manager, since 2018.

The latest development follows the announcement from Rupert Murdoch on Thursday that he is stepping down as chairman of Fox and News Corp.

In a memo to employees, Mr Murdoch said he would assume the role of “chairman emeritus” of the two companies.

Mr Murdoch, 92, said he would make the move in November and that he remains in good health.

Lachlan Murdoch will become sole chairman of News Corp and continue as executive chairman and chief executive of Fox.

Meanwhile, Rupert Murdoch's total compensation for 2023 jumped more than 24 per cent to $22.9 million, according to a regulatory filing on Friday.

At Fox, his 2023 compensation includes an annual base salary of $5 million and about $7.6 million in stock awards and options. It also includes $4.4 million in incentive pay, the filing showed.

Lachlan Murdoch's compensation at Fox stands at $21.8 million for 2023, little changed from last year's $21.7 million.

Updated: September 23, 2023, 7:12 AM