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Sky UK CEO Stephen van Rooyen to step down

Business units will be overseen by Sky Group CEO Dana Strong.

Business units will be overseen by Sky Group CEO Dana Strong.

Stephen van Rooyen. (Courtesy photo)
Stephen van Rooyen. (Courtesy photo)

Sky Group says the chief executive of its U.K. and Ireland businesses Stephen van Rooyen will step down at the end of February.

Starting this week, Sky U.K. and Ireland will be overseen by Sky Group CEO Dana Strong until a successor is named.

Van Rooyen has spent nearly two decades at Sky, overseeing its satellite and linear channel businesses as well as helping the company develop its streaming pay television service Sky Go and, later, Now TV. He also helped facilitate Sky U.K. and Ireland’s transition from an independent company whose assets were partially owned by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation toward one majority-owned by American telecommunications firm Comcast.

He started his career with Sky in 2006 as its director of product management and product marketing. He was elevated to the role of managing director for sales, marketing and brand across Sky in 2011, then promoted to Sky’s chief marketing and digital officer three years later.

Van Rooyen became the chief executive officer of Sky U.K. and Ireland less than a year ago, assuming the role in February 2023 after serving as the CEO of Sky’s U.K. and European businesses for seven years.

“I have taken the decision that now is the right time for me to leave Sky,” van Rooyen said in a statement. “The business today has everything it needs to compete to win. We have strong leadership, led by Dana, a world-class team, and a fantastic plan. I would like to thank every one of my colleagues for the support I’ve received and the commitment they make to Sky. It has been a real privilege, and I will always be Sky’s biggest supporter.”

“I would like to thank Stephen for his very significant contribution to Sky over the past 18 years,” Strong said on Monday. “He has played an instrumental role in developing and building our brand, developing and launching our products, taking our UK business into new markets, leading our people and ensuring our customers are at the heart of everything we do.”

It was not immediately clear from the announcement if van Rooyen plans to join another company or retire from the industry altogether.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).