In Brief.

In Brief. Restructured sales team for JCDecaux JCDecaux has restructured its sales team, bringing in a centralised trading unit to concentrate on tying up strategic deals. The move will mean the rest of its team is free to sell the outdoor medium as a whole, as well as its own products.

Restructured sales team for JCDecaux JCDecaux has restructured its sales team, bringing in a centralised trading unit to concentrate on tying up strategic deals. The move will mean the rest of its team is free to sell the outdoor medium as a whole, as well as its own products.

Meanwhile, senior sources at Decaux have denied reports this week that it is poised to buy outdoor rival Maiden.

Decaux to take over Maiden?, page 24 Albion takes Blaupunkt business from OMD UK OMD UK has lost a chunk of its Bosch media business, in-car entertainment manufacturer Blaupunkt, to the strategic and creative agency Albion after a three-way pitch. Albion went head to head against the incumbent and PHD Rocket for the business – worth £500,000 – which went up for review in October last year.

Former ITV boss laments local programming Richard Eyre, the former ITV chief executive, has lamented ITV’s loss of strength in local television programming. Speaking on the digital radio station Planet Rock, Eyre said: “When I took over ITV it was local shows that were the top five shows in parts of the country. Outside of London they were really driving the schedule. It’s not so now – and that’s a shame.”

New chairman for Universal McCann Manchester Universal McCann Manchester has appointed Mike Williams, a former managing partner of Mediavest Manchester, as its new chairman. His appointment follows the departure of managing director Andrew Thomas.

Direct MediaCom lands Red Cross business British Red Cross has handed Direct MediaCom its direct response media business following a four-way pitch including the incumbent, MCS. The account is worth £1m and will include work for the Red Cross Week appeal.

Northcliffe boss leaves to take over weekly papers Northcliffe Electronic Publishing’s managing director, Richard Karn, is to leave on 1 March, after only a year in the job, to become MD of the company’s weekly newspaper titles in South-east England.

GWR denies rumours of merger with Capital Contrary to strong industry rumour, GWR Group has denied that it is in formal talks with Capital Radio Group, to sew up a suggested £840m merger deal.

City news, page 24 New Channel 4 chairman is the real thing Penny Hughes, a former UK Coca-Cola president, is expected to be confirmed as the new chairman of Channel 4 this week.

The appointment, which will be made by Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell, will see Hughes replace Vanni Treves.

Northcliffe deal puts Metro up against stablemate A landmark deal with regional publisher Northcliffe has put the free daily, Metro,head to head for the first time with a Daily Mail and General Trust stablemate. In May, new editions of the newspaper will launch in Bath and Bristol – an area already served by a Northcliffe morning daily title – as well as in Leicester, Nottingham and Derby in the East Midlands.

SMG chairman to step down Scottish Media Group, which owns Scottish Television and Virgin radio, will lose its chairman Don Cruickshank when he steps down after the company’s AGM in June

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