Murdoch MacLennan

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Murdoch MacLennan (born 10 April 1949) is a senior media executive in the UK. Since October 2004, he has been CEO of the Telegraph Media Group. He was promoted from this role in June 2017 becoming deputy chairman of the group.[1]

Previously he was the Group Managing Director of Associated Newspapers (1994-2004).[2] He has held a number of key roles for the major groups within the UK Newspaper industry, as well as senior positions on a number of global industry bodies.

Early life[edit]

MacLennan was born on 10 April 1949 in Glasgow, Scotland to Donald MacLennan (1919-1991) and Hazel MacLennan (née Hope, 1923).


MacLennan began his career as a graduate trainee at The Scotsman in Edinburgh, then Newcastle and South Wales before moving to Reading as production manager for a regional weekly. He joined the board of the Daily Record and Sunday Mail as production director in 1982. Both papers were part of Mirror Group Newspapers, and he then became the group's director of production in 1984. He moved to Express Newspapers a year later in 1985 to become production and technical director. In 1989 he joined Associated Newspapers as Managing Director of Harmsworth Quays. In 1992 he returned to Mirror Group as group operations director of Mirror Group Newspapers and managing director of the Daily Record and Sunday Mail until 1994, when he returned to Associated Newspapers. In August 2004, he was appointed as the CEO of the Telegraph Media Group.[3]

As CEO, he has led the implementation of several commercial verticals such as eCommerce, Travel and Events.

In 2010, he became Non-Executive Chairman of the Press Association Group, the UK’s leading multi-platform content provider, in addition to his role at the Telegraph Media Group. He was President of IFRA in Darmstadt (the global technical association for newspapers) from 1997–2003 became a vice president of the World Association of Newspapers (2003–2010). He is a member of the European Publishers’ Council (EPC) and a director of the International News Media Association (INMA).

MacLennan was a member of the Commission on Scottish Devolution (The Calman Commission). He was appointed an Honorary Professor attached to the Business School at Glasgow University in 1997 and has been the Chancellor’s Assessor on the Court of Glasgow University since 2009. He also received an Honorary Doctorate at the University of Paisley.[4] MacLennan has initiated and led media sponsorships, such as the Chair in Environmental Newspaper Technologies at the University of Paisley and has been instrumental in developing other media related campaigns, notably the ‘Newspapers in Education’ initiative in Scotland which led to a major project on ‘The Year 2000’ being undertaken by every school in the country.

He holds a number of directorships, including Vice-President and Appeals Chairman of the Newspaper Press Fund and Festival chairman of Newstraid. He is a Companion of the Institute of Management and a Freeman of the City of London.

MacLennan has twice been Chairman of the Newspaper Publishers Association (2005-2007; 2013-2014). He is a member of the Regulatory Funding Company Board and in 2015 he joined the Google DNI Council.[5]

He has spoken on industry matters to international audiences across the world and has presented as well as had published a variety of papers on the continuing process of change in publishing.

MacLennan is actively involved in several charities, including the Journalists’ Charity and was President of the Printing Charity (2012-2013).[6] He is a patron of the Gallowgate Families Support Group, a self-help organisation run by parents in Glasgow’s East End whose children have been affected by drug addiction.


  1. ^ Sweney, Mark (14 June 2017). "Telegraph chief executive Murdoch MacLennan steps down after 13 years". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 June 2017. 
  2. ^ "Murdoch MacLennan Profile". Bloomberg. Retrieved 20 January 2017. 
  3. ^ Litterick, David. "Telegraph appoints ex-Daily Mail chief". Telegraph Media Group. Retrieved 20 January 2017. 
  4. ^ "Paisley University Graduations". The Herald Scotland. Retrieved 21 January 2017. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ "MacLennan to be next president of Printing Charity". InPublishing. InPublishing Ltd. Retrieved 20 January 2017.