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ITV investors oppose Davis

Embattled broadcaster ITV faces another struggle as shareholders prepare to block the appointment of Sir Crispin Davis as its new chairman.<br /><br />Ex-Reed Elsevier chief executive Davis and former Channel 4 chairman Sir Michael Bishop are said to be ITV&rsquo;s favourites for the role. <br /><br />However, it is understood that some shareholders are against Davis as a candidate following his performance at the helm of Reed.<br /><br />The resistance from shareholders is&nbsp; the latest in a string of problems for the struggling broadcaster, which confirmed last week it had abandoned talks aimed at hiring ex-BSkyB boss Tony Ball.<br /><br />That day, executive chairman Michael Grade surprised the market by saying that he intends to leave the firm as soon as possible. <br /><br />ITV declined to comment on potential candidates for either role, but said that the search for the chairman is &ldquo;well-advanced&rdquo; and could be completed within weeks.<br /><br />Aside from Davis and Bishop, former BT and BBC chairman Sir Christopher Bland and British Airways chairman Martin Broughton are also said to be in the running.<br /><br />The new non-executive chairman&rsquo;s first job will be to find a new chief executive. ITV dropped talks with Ball after failing to agree the terms of his incentive package. However Ball said an ITV ultimatum over the appointment of the new non-executive chairman, not the compensation package, had been the issue. <br /><br />Executives likely to be linked to the vacant CEO post include ITV chief operating officer John Cresswell and Peter Fincham, the company&rsquo;s director of television.