Virgin Media Television (VMTV) managing director Pat Kiely is to leave the business in July, the broadcaster has confirmed in a media statement. Kiely has been with the broadcaster, formerly TV3, for 22 years. Previously commercial director, he replaced David McRedmond, now An Post CEO, following Virgin’s acquisition of the broadcaster in 2015.
He planned to announce his news in March but it got postponed due to the Covid-19 outbreak.
Kiely joined TV3 having gained media and advertising experience at DDFH&B and Saatchi & Saatchi. He was a small shareholder in the broadcaster before it was bought by Doughty Hanson. As commercial director, he was seen as being highly committed to the brand’s development and was key in overseeing a strategy in challenging RTÉ for audiences.
He was also in charge of rolling out the Virgin Media Sport subscriber channel.
Kiely and his team bucked international trends by growing audience share and delivered double-digit revenue growth. They fended off the threat posed by UTV Ireland, following the rights loss of Coronation Street and Emmerdale before VMTV eventually acquiring the station and restoring its content rights. Virgin Media is part of John Malone’s Liberty Global.
Tony Hanway, CEO, Virgin Media Ireland, whose task it is to find a new MD, paid tribute to Kiely by saying his track record speaks for itself and in his more recent role as managing director he transformed the business. “Most importantly,” Hanway added, “he played a huge role in integrating the business and future-proofing the broadcasting strategy.”
Kiely said: “It’s with a heavy heart I say goodbye but I’m equally happy to do so with the business in such great shape. While Covid-19 is having an obvious impact on our ad revenue, it has brought to life the importance of being fully integrated. I’m excited about my own future plans and look forward to taking on a new challenge after a short break.”