Lachlan Murdoch

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Lachlan Murdoch
Lachlan Murdoch in May 2013.jpg
Murdoch in 2013
Lachlan Keith Murdoch

(1971-09-08) 8 September 1971 (age 51)
Wimbledon, London, England
  • Australia[1]
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
EducationPrinceton University (BA)
Occupation(s)Executive chairman, Nova Entertainment
Executive chairman and CEO, Fox Corporation
Co-chairman, News Corp
(m. 1999)

Lachlan Keith Murdoch (/ˈlɒklən/;[2] born 8 September 1971) is a British-Australian businessman and mass media heir.[1][3] He is the executive chairman of Nova Entertainment, co-chairman of News Corp, executive chairman and CEO of Fox Corporation,[4] and the founder of Australian investment company Illyria Pty Ltd.

Early life and education[edit]

Lachlan Murdoch was born on 8 September 1971 at Wimbledon Hospital in Wimbledon, London, England.[5] He is the eldest son of Australian-born American media mogul Rupert Murdoch, and his former wife, Scottish journalist and author Anna Maria dePeyster (née Torv; formerly Murdoch). He was raised in New York City where his father owned the New York Post. He received his primary and secondary education at the Aspen Country Day School in Aspen, Colorado, Trinity School in New York City, and at Phillips Academy in Andover, Massachusetts. In 1994, he graduated with a bachelor's degree in philosophy from Princeton University.[6] While at Princeton, he studied philosophy with Béatrice Longuenesse and Alan Hajek.[7]


News Corp executive[edit]

In 1989, Rupert Murdoch brought Lachlan Murdoch, then 18 years old, to Australia while on business, to have Lachlan trained for three months at the Daily Mirror. At the age of 22, Murdoch was appointed general manager of Queensland Newspapers, the publisher of Brisbane's Courier-Mail.[citation needed] One year later, he became publisher of Australia's first national paper, The Australian. In 1995 he was appointed deputy CEO of News Limited, executive director of News Corporation in 1996, deputy chief operating officer in 2000; he was made senior executive vice president from 1999 to 2000, and has been chairman of STAR since 1995.

Encouraged to invest in One.Tel by his friend Australian businessman James Packer, the son of television network owner Kerry Packer, Murdoch was extensively criticized for encouraging News Corporation's multi-hundred million-dollar investment in the start-up telecommunications company.[8] In April 2014, Murdoch and Packer agreed to an A$40 million settlement over the failure of One.Tel. The settlement was approved by the Supreme Court of New South Wales on 17 April 2014, with A$14.93 million to be paid by the Packer family's Consolidated Press Holdings, A$11.77 million to be paid by Packer's Crown Resorts and A$13.3 million to be paid by News Corp.[9]

Murdoch led an initial $10.75 million investment, of which only $2.25 million was in cash, in REA Group, and subsequently championed the retention of the investment over the objections of those who wished to sell it. The company later emerged as Australia's market leader in online real estate advertising, and in 2014 was assessed as worth more than $3.6 billion to News Corp.[10] With a personal interest in Australian rugby league, on 30 March 1995 Murdoch was at the first Super League meeting in the Atanaskovic Hartnell offices in Sydney. He and former Brisbane Broncos chief John Ribot signed up leading Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs players on documents which were not legally effective. Murdoch was the Broncos' number one ticket holder.[11][12][13] For the year 2001, Murdoch earned a salary of A$2.59 million.[14] In June 2005, Murdoch received the Press & Outdoor Advertising "media person of the year" award in Cannes.[15] Murdoch is one of the founding patrons (along with Anthony Pratt, Peter Lowy and Lisa Fox) of an organisation called "Advance", formerly known as the Young Australian Professionals in America.[16]

In July 2005, the 33-year-old Murdoch abruptly resigned as an executive at the News Corp. The unexplained departure apparently dashed News Corp. Chief executive Rupert Murdoch's hopes that his son would one day take over as CEO of the global media empire, which then included the Twentieth Century Fox movie studio, now a subsidiary of Disney Studios; and includes the Fox television network, several satellite broadcasters, and newspapers in Britain, Australia, and the United States. Roger Ailes, the chairman of Fox News Channel, was named chairman of News Corp's group of television stations to succeed Murdoch junior. Media speculated that his brother, James Murdoch, then chief executive of UK satellite TV company BSkyB, may succeed Rupert Murdoch.[17][18][19][20][21] During his time as an executive at News Corp, Murdoch was the deputy chief operating officer of News Corporation, now 21st Century Fox. He had oversight of HarperCollins and the company's lines of business in Australia, including REA. He also served on the board of Foxtel and as chairman of Fox Television stations and was the publisher of the New York Post.[22] He was appointed to the News Corp board in 1996.[17]

Private investment activities[edit]

On leaving News Corp with a two–year non–compete agreement,[23] Murdoch founded an Australian private investment company, Illyria Pty Ltd.,[24] and developed an eclectic mix of investments, with stakes in the Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket team Rajasthan Royals, online DVD rental company Quickflix, toy marketer Funtastic and digital media company Destra.[23] On 21 January 2008, Murdoch and James Packer announced that their companies, Illyria and Consolidated Press Holdings would seek to privatise the publicly-listed Consolidated Media Holdings. It was expected that the proposed A$3.3 billion deal would deliver Murdoch and Packer with private stakes in Foxtel, Fox Sports, Universal Media Firm, LLC and PBL Media, with the latter owning the Nine Network and ACP Magazines.[23][25] Packer eventually decided to sell down his stake in media companies in a series of transactions between 2006 and 2008,[26][27] and the deal with Murdoch collapsed.

In November 2009, Murdoch acquired 50% of Nova Entertainment via Illyria and he became chairman. In September 2012 Illyria acquired the balance of shares it did not own.[23][28]

In 2010, Packer purchased an 18% stake in Network Ten, quickly offloading half to Murdoch. Both Packer and Murdoch joined the Ten board.[29] In February 2011, Murdoch was appointed acting CEO of Ten Network Holdings after the company's board terminated the contract of CEO Grant Blackley.[30] The following month Packer unexpectedly resigned from the board.[31][32] In February 2012, the Ten board appointed Murdoch non-executive chairman of Ten Network Holdings.[33] Although Ten was already in some financial difficulties before Murdoch became CEO, by late 2012, on paper Illyria had lost A$110 million of the original A$150 million invested since 2010. The share price had fallen by about 80% and network profits had dropped by over half. In an attempt to control costs, Ten had reduced employment numbers by 160 people, and the problems were mainly attributed to falling advertising revenues and restructuring at the network. Ten purchased, at three times its original cost,[34] the Australian rights for MasterChef from the Australian subsidiary of the Shine Group, itself a subsidiary of the News Corp–owned 21st Century Fox. On 14 June 2017, Ten went into voluntary administration after Murdoch and fellow shareholder Bruce Gordon declined to extend the company's credit facility.[35][36] Two bids were received for Ten; one from Murdoch and Gordon and one from CBS Corporation - Ten's largest creditor. The CBS bid was preferred by both the administrators and creditors.[37] CBS's successful bid meant Murdoch lost his entire investment in the network.[38]

Return to the family fold[edit]

In March 2014, Murdoch was appointed as non-executive co-chairman of News Corp. and 21st Century Fox Inc. in a move that was seen as succession planning for the media empire.[39][40][41][42][43][44] Murdoch stood aside as chairman and a Director of Ten Network Holdings.[45] In June 2015 he was named as Executive Chairman of 21st Century Fox.[46]

After Fox was acquired by Disney in March 2019, Murdoch was named as the chairman and CEO of the Fox Corporation.[47]

Pending lawsuits[edit]

Dominion lawsuit[edit]

Lachlan Murdoch and his father Rupert are currently defendants in a $1.6 billion lawsuit filed by voting machine maker Dominion on March 26, 2021, for knowingly and maliciously spreading a false narrative accusing Dominion of election fraud. Dominion claims in the aftermath of Donald Trump's loss of the 2020 election, Fox News began to lose viewership and was negatively impacted as President Trump criticized Fox News and bolstered competitors that would spread his narrative of fraud. Dominion continued that, under the direction of Lachlan Murdoch, Fox News connected Dominion with unsubstantiated fraud and intentionally provided a platform for guests that Fox News' hosts knew were making false and defamatory statements, while Fox News' hosts endorsed, repeated and amplified known defamatory and false statements.

Fox News Corporation requested that the case be dismissed and on December 16, 2021 the court rejected the request of Fox News with the opinion that "Dominion adequately pleaded actual malice by Fox News." June 6, 2022 Fox News Corp asked Judge Eric M. Davis to drop the lawsuit. In his opinion Judge Davis denied the request with the opinion that Dominion had shown enough evidence of actual malice on behalf of Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch of Fox Corporation to allow the case to continue.[48]

Smartmatic lawsuit[edit]

In a lawsuit similar to Dominion's, voting machine maker Smartmatic filed a lawsuit implicating both Lachlan Murdoch and his father Rupert for 2.7 billion dollars on February 4, 2021. Smartmatic claims "Fox News engaged in conspiracy to spread disinformation about Smartmatic. They lied, and did so knowingly and intentionally." In March 2022, Justice David Cohen allowed the removal of several hosts as co-defendants but rejected Fox's motion for dismissal of the suit allowing it to go to the discovery phase. In a second attempt from Fox News to dismiss the lawsuit, Justice David Cohen again rejected Fox's request and gave the opinion that Smartmatic had showed a "substantial basis" for their claim that Fox News "showed a reckless disregard for the truth."[49] Both Lachlan and Rupert Murdoch's emails are being sought in discovery to show the extent to which they knew their statements were false.

Crikey controversy[edit]

Lachlan Murdoch sent a series of legal threats to the Crikey website after political editor Bernard Keane tied the Murdochs to Donald Trump's January 6 attempted coup in a June 29[when?] article. Keane gave the opinion “If Trump ends up in the dock for a variety of crimes committed as president, as he should be, not all his co-conspirators will be there with him. Nixon was famously the “unindicted co-conspirator” in Watergate. The Murdochs and their slew of poisonous Fox News commentators are the unindicted co-conspirators of this continuing crisis.” Crikey originally removed the article to avoid legal persecution but later republished it with Editor Peter Fray accusing Murdoch of "using the law to silence public debate," and "seeking to intimidate us."[50]

Personal life[edit]

Murdoch married British-born Australian model/actress Sarah O'Hare in 1999. The couple have two sons, Kalan Alexander, born on 9 November 2004, and Aidan Patrick, born on 6 May 2006;[51] and one daughter, Aerin Elisabeth, named for his sister and grandmother, born on 12 April 2010.[52][1]

The Murdochs owned "Berthong", a house in Elizabeth Bay, Sydney, until it was sold to Russell Crowe in 2003.[53] In November 2009, Murdoch purchased "Le Manoir", a 4,097-square-metre (44,100 sq ft) mansion in Bellevue Hill for $23 million; and purchased an adjoining 1,049-square-metre (11,290 sq ft) property two years later.[54][55] In 2017, Murdoch and his wife paid US$29 million for a large equestrian property in Aspen, Colorado, that contains a 1,250-square-metre (13,500 sq ft) six-bedroom home.[56] In 2019, they purchased the Chartwell Estate in Los Angeles for an estimated US$150 million.[57][58]

Net worth[edit]

Year Financial Review
Rich List
Australia's 50 Richest
Rank Net worth (A$) Rank Net worth (US$)
2018[59][60] n/a unlisted n/a unlisted
2019[61][62] 18 Increase $3.62 billion Increase n/a unlisted
2020[63] 22 Decrease $3.76 billion Increase
2021[64] 22 Steady $4.43 billion Increase
Icon Description
Steady Has not changed from the previous year
Increase Has increased from the previous year
Decrease Has decreased from the previous year


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Jukes, Peter (8 August 2012). The Fall of the House of Murdoch: Fourteen Days That Ended a Media Dynasty. London: Unbound (published 2012). ISBN 978-1-908717-43-6.
  2. ^ Wells, John C. (2008), Longman Pronunciation Dictionary (3rd ed.), Longman, pp. 449 and 526, ISBN 9781405881180 According to this source, the first name is also pronounced /ˈlæklən/ in the UK.
  3. ^ Scocca, Tom (8 August 2005). "Why Lachlan Flew the Coop: It Was Rupe". The New York Observer. Archived from the original on 25 August 2016. Retrieved 23 April 2017.
  4. ^ Ellison, Sarah (20 March 2019). "Lachlan Murdoch takes control of Fox Corp. But how will he deal with President Trump? - The Washington Post". The Washington Post.
  5. ^ Rohm, Wendy Goldman (12 March 2002). The Murdoch Mission: The Digital Transformation of a Media Empire. John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 978-0-471-20539-5.
  6. ^ Barnes, Brooks; Ember, Sydney (22 April 2017). "In House of Murdoch, Sons Set About an Elaborate Overhaul". The New York Times.
  7. ^ Maass, Peter. "How Lachlan Murdoch Went from Studying Philosophy at Princeton to Exploiting White Nationalism at Fox News". The Intercept.
  8. ^ Luckhurst, Tim (31 July 2005). "So where does Rupert Murdoch go from here?". The Independent on Sunday. Archived from the original on 22 July 2011. Retrieved 10 April 2010.
  9. ^ Butler, Ben (17 April 2014). "Court approves $40m One.Tel settlement". The Age. Retrieved 17 April 2014.
  10. ^ "How Lachlan Murdoch turned $10 million into more than $3 billion". Big News Network. 5 February 2014. Archived from the original on 13 February 2014. Retrieved 13 February 2014.
  11. ^ Chenoweth, Neil (5 August 2005). "Lachlan's legacy: $560m lost on Super League". The Australian Financial Review. South Sydney Rabbitohs. Archived from the original on 14 March 2006. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  12. ^ Bronco Magazine 2002
  13. ^ Masters, Roy (13 August 2014). "Brisbane Broncos cross the line in political divide". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  14. ^ Mayne, Stephen (7 October 2001). "Rappers, Fulon Gong and lots of questions". Crikey. Archived from the original on 26 May 2005. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  15. ^ "Lachlan Murdoch heckled in Cannes". The Sydney Morning Herald. 23 June 2005. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  16. ^ Allen, Ken (18 November 2005). 2005 Advance Benefit Dinner (PDF) (Speech). Cipriani, Wall Street, New York City: Australian Consul General New York. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 August 2006. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  17. ^ a b Tryhorn, Chris (29 July 2005). "Lachlan Murdoch resigns from News Corp". The Guardian. Australia. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  18. ^ Fishman, Steve (19 September 2005). "The Boy Who Wouldn't Be King". New York. Archived from the original on 19 July 2008. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  19. ^ Porter, Jeni (14 September 2005). "Why Lachlan Murdoch quit". The Age. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  20. ^ Gibson, Owen; Milmo, Dan (1 August 2005). "End of the line". The Guardian. Australia. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  21. ^ Lieberman, David; Petrecca, Laura (29 July 2005). "Murdoch's oldest son leaves empire". USA Today. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  22. ^ "Lachlan Murdoch". Our leadership. News Corp. 2015. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  23. ^ a b c d Steffens, Miriam (19 November 2011). "Building another Murdoch empire". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  24. ^ "Company Overview of Illyria Pty, Ltd". Bloomberg Business. Bloomberg. 2005. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  25. ^ "Murdoch junior to seize control of old Packer empire". 21 January 2008. Retrieved 17 March 2008.[dead link]
  26. ^ Williams, Pamela (22 July 2013). Killing Fairfax: Packer, Murdoch & The Ultimate Revenge. HarperCollins. pp. 140, 150, 159–160, 213, 222. Archived from the original on 23 October 2013. Retrieved 21 October 2013.
  27. ^ James, Packer (13 September 2013). "James Packer on building a new Sydney casino" (Interview). Interviewed by Helia Ebrahimi. CNBC. Retrieved 23 October 2013.
  28. ^ "Lachlan Murdoch acquires other half of DMG Radio". MediaSpy. 2 September 2012. Archived from the original on 23 November 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  29. ^ "Packer, Murdoch accept seats on Ten board". ABC News. Australia. 9 November 2010. Retrieved 9 November 2010.
  30. ^ Janda, Michael (23 February 2011). "Lachlan Murdoch appointed acting Ten CEO". ABC News. Australia.
  31. ^ Le May, Rebecca (3 March 2011). "James Packer quits Ten board". The Advertiser. Adelaide. Archived from the original on 5 March 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2014 – via
  32. ^ Magee, Antonia (2 March 2011). "James Packer, Lachlan Murdoch fall out over new Ten Network chief James Warburton". Herald Sun. Retrieved 21 August 2012.
  33. ^ "Ten Appoints New Chairman" (PDF) (Press release). Ten Network Holdings. 10 February 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 17 March 2012. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
  34. ^ Barry, Paul (15 November 2012). "Thanks to Lachlan, Ten ripe for the picking". Crikey. Retrieved 20 November 2012.
  35. ^ Danckert, Sarah (14 June 2017). "Network Ten heads into voluntary administration". The Sydney Morning Herald. Sydney. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  36. ^ Pash, Chris (14 June 2017). "The Ten network is in administration". Business Insider Australia. Sydney. Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  37. ^ Kruger, Colin (20 September 2017). "CBS won because Network Ten employees didn't want Lachlan Murdoch to come back". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 4 November 2017.
  38. ^ Patrick, Aaron (10 November 2017). "Ten-CBS hearing descends into near farce as court clears takeover bid". Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 14 November 2017.
  39. ^ Thomson, Amy (27 March 2014). "Murdoch Promotes Son Lachlan in Succession Plan for Empire". Bloomberg Business. Bloomberg. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  40. ^ Peers, Martin; Evans, Peter (26 March 2014). "Sons of Rupert Murdoch Get Expanded Roles". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  41. ^ Chenoweth, Neil (29 March 2014). "Inside the Murdoch dynasty". The Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  42. ^ Williams, Christopher (26 March 2014). "Rupert Murdoch's eldest son Lachlan takes co-chairman role in succession plan". The Telegraph. United Kingdom. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  43. ^ McNair, Brian (28 March 2014). "Lachlan Murdoch and News: the first-born son is ahead … for now". The Conversation. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  44. ^ Mayne, Stephen (28 March 2014). "Lachlan Murdoch lured back to News Corp, but which office does he get?". SmartCompany. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  45. ^ "Changes to Ten's Board of Directors" (PDF) (Press release). Ten Network Holdings. 26 March 2014. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 February 2015. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
  46. ^ "Lachlan Murdoch named executive co-chairman 21st Century Fox". Mediaweek. 16 June 2015.
  47. ^ Holloway, Joe Otterson,Daniel; Otterson, Joe; Holloway, Daniel (21 March 2019). "New Fox CEO Lachlan Murdoch Announces All Employees to Receive Stock in Company".
  48. ^ "Fox Corp. Must Face $1.6 Billion Defamation Lawsuit That Dominion Claims Goes to the Top of the Murdoch Empire, Judge Rules". Law & Crime. 22 June 2022. Retrieved 17 August 2022.
  49. ^ "SmartMatic: Lawsuit Updates & Fact Checks". 16 August 2022.
  50. ^ "Lachlan Murdoch Goes to War With Website Blaming Him for Jan. 6". Retrieved 17 August 2022.
  51. ^ "Murdochs welcome their second son". Herald Sun. 7 May 2006. Retrieved 11 March 2008.
  52. ^ Bibby, Paul (13 April 2010). "New baby for Murdochs". The Age. Retrieved 23 December 2013.
  53. ^ Sams, Christine (1 June 2003). "On the move with Russell and Danielle". The Sun-Herald. Retrieved 11 March 2008.
  54. ^ Chancellor, Jonathan (26 February 2011). "Murdochs buy next door to expand fiefdom". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 14 February 2015.
  55. ^ Thistleton, Rebecca; Hutchinson, Samantha (23 September 2013). "Murdochs begin $11.6m overhaul of Bellevue Hill mansion". The Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 11 March 2008.
  56. ^ Clarke, Katherine (21 September 2017). "Lachlan Murdoch Pays $29 Million for an Aspen, Colo., Home". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  57. ^ Frank, Frank; DiLella, Chris (12 December 2019). "Take a look inside of Lachlan Murdoch's new $150 million LA mansion". CNBC. Retrieved 25 June 2020.
  58. ^ Geier, Thom (12 December 2019). "Lachlan Murdoch Buys 'Beverly Hillbillies' Mansion in Bel-Air for Record $150 Million". TheWrap.
  59. ^ Stensholt, John, ed. (25 May 2018). "2018 AFR Rich List: Who are Australia's richest people?". The Australian Financial Review. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
  60. ^ "Australia's Richest 2017: Country's Wealthiest Continue Mining For Dollars". Forbes Asia. 1 November 2017. Retrieved 28 September 2019.
  61. ^ Bailey, Michael (30 May 2019). "Australia's 200 richest people revealed". The Australian Financial Review. Nine Publishing. Retrieved 31 May 2019.
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  63. ^ Bailey, Michael; Sprague, Julie-anne (30 October 2020). "The full list: Australia's wealthiest 200 revealed". The Australian Financial Review. Nine Publishing. Retrieved 31 October 2020.
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This article contains content from the defunct wiki, HierarchyPedia, used here under the GNU Free Documentation License

Further reading[edit]

  • Wendy Goldman Rohm Murdoch Mission (2002). Interviews with various Murdoch family members
  • Neil Chenoweth Virtual Murdoch (2001). Mainly about Rupert Murdoch
  • Paul Barry, Rich Kids, Bantam Books, 2002, ISBN 1-86325-338-6
  • Kirkpatrick, David, "Murdoch Gets a Jewel. Who'll Get His Crown?" New York Times, 28 December 2003.
  • Milliken, Robert, "Lachlan Murdoch; Heir to the Sun and Sky", The Independent (London), 7 May 1995.
  • Pappu, Sridhar, "Lachlan Murdoch, Spiky Punk Heir Right for Post?" New York Observer, 24 November 2003.
  • Salamon, Julie, "Television: An American Story; A Family That Tried to Be Both Rich and Good", New York Times, 1 October 2000.
  • Manning, Paddy, "The Successor: The High Stakes Life of Lachlan Murdoch" Black Inc [Schwartz Books Pty Ltd] 2022

External links[edit]