Read in Catalan

The board of directors of the Mediapro Group has approved this Friday, at the request of its majority shareholder, the removal of Jaume Roures from the management of the audiovisual group after 30 years at the head of the business.

As reported by the company, at the same time the board ratified Tatxo Benet, also a managing partner of Mediapro, in his positions as president and CEO, posts he had been holding for more than a decade. "Jaume Roures and Tatxo Benet have been key pieces in the evolution not only of the Mediapro Group, but they have also been global benchmarks in the audiovisual sector," the company underlined.

The audiovisual group also affirmed that the rest of the members of the Mediapro management team will continue in their positions as normal. That teams consists of Juan Ruiz de Gauna as general manager; Eva Abans as financial director; Josep Ensesa as legal officer; José Luis Rubio as director of broadcast and sedia services; Laura Fernández Espeso as director of The Mediapro Studio; Carmen Fernández Tallón as director of innovation; and Carme Anglada as director of communication.

"All of them are fully committed to the future of the group", the company stated, while adding that "they are working ceaselessly to satisfy their customers and bring value to shareholders, in a work environment which places people above all other considerations."

"Not even the slightest disagreement"

The Mediapro CEO, Tatxo Benet, stated after the passing of the motion that "Mediapro Group has become a great company, a resilient company that has shown that it has always been able to go further in the face of any new challenge." "The entire management team and the 7,000 people who work in the group will continue to do so with the same efficiency, effectiveness and dedication. The entire management team and its CEO are fully aligned with the group's shareholder partners, Southwind and WPP, with whom we seamlessly share the company's future project," he stressed.

"There has been even the slightest disagreement in this regard. Not only have there been no discrepancies in the future model, but there has not been the slightest change in the foundational project or in the values that the group stands for. And there won't be as long as this management team is here, because it is this management team that has put them into practice for thirty years and because our shareholders share our project and our values, which were key when they assessed making their investment in Mediapro. No one has changed [our project and values] and no one wants to change them," he affirmed.

At the same time, Benet stated that "the gap left by Jaume Roures in the group is immense". "And from a personal point of view I will greatly miss these wonderful decades of working together, during which we have collaborated to construct the Mediapro Group and make it what it is. But this would not have been possible without the people who are the best professionals in their respective work areas in the group. In this sense, Mediapro will continue to be in very good hands," he said.

"The inspiration and legacy that Jaume leaves us are an irreplaceable part of Grup Mediapro's DNA and will always remain present in the work of this company, reminding us that people come first, that we must never give up on our ideas and dreams, that by working as Jaume has done, we will continue to achieve everything we pursue," commented Tatxo Benet. He added that "we will now celebrate 30 years [of Mediapro] and everyone, absolutely everyone, shareholders, CEO, management team and all the people who make up the group are aligned and committed to carry on for another thirty years, at least, with the same success we've had so far."

From political prisoner to media magnate

Before co-founding Mediapro in Barcelona in 1994, Jaume Roures had a background as a sports journalist, and in his youth had taken part in the anti-Franco struggle in far-left organizations, serving jail time as a political prisoner. In the 90s, Mediapro began by producing sports and news programming, before expanding broadly across the audiovisual and media production fields, with offices across Europe and the Americas. During the Catalan independence process, the Civil Guard investigated Jaume Roures' possible involvement in the 1-O referendum. The media company leader went on record in 2019 as saying he was "not in favour" of independence.