News Corp. Investors Call for Split of Chairman-CEO Roles

News Corp. investors Christian Bros. Investment Services and British Columbia Investment Management Corp. filed a joint shareholder proposal calling for an independent chairman at Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp.

The joint resolution is supported by the Local Authority Pension Fund Forum in the U.K., the investors said today in a statement. Christian Bros. and the British Columbia fund also said they support a proposal from the Nathan Cummings Foundation seeking to eliminate the dual-class share structure that gives Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Murdoch’s family control of the New York-based media company.

At last year’s shareholder meeting, a resolution to split the chairman and CEO roles at News Corp. was supported by two-thirds of independent shareholders and elimination of the dual-class stock garnered 62 percent of outsiders’ votes.

Since then, News Corp. has announced plans to split into two companies. The one focused on publishing will retain the News Corp. name and the other, to be called 21st Century Fox, will hold entertainment assets. Murdoch will be chairman of both companies and CEO of the entertainment business.

News Corp., which reports results today, fell 1 percent to $31.86 at the close in New York. The Class A shares have advanced 25 percent in 2013.

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