Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel have announced a shock departure from the BBC in a move that blows the race for the new political editor position wide open.
The Newsnight presenter wrote today: “Some work news – @BBCJonSopel and I are going to launch a brand new podcast with @Global, exec produced by @dinosofos.”
“It’s an amazing opportunity to do something we all love, and we are so thrilled Global is giving us this opportunity to be big and ambitious with this project.”
She added: “Nevertheless, it will be a wrench to leave the BBC after 20 phenomenal years. I am so grateful for the opportunities I’ve had there.”
“More than anything I’m grateful to have worked with the most incredible people – many of whom are dear friends. I owe my BBC colleagues everything.”
Maitlis is the lead anchor of BBC Two’s news and current affairs programme Newsnight. Arguably, one of her most famous scoops was her interview with Prince Andrew in November 2019 about his relationship with sex offender Jeffery Epstein.
Meanwhile, former BBC North America Editor Jon Sopel was tipped to be the next political editor for the Beeb, replacing Laura Kuenssberg.
However, he tweeted this afternoon: “Some work news: @maitlis and I are going to launch a brand, spanking new podcast with @global. We’re excited to be working with them on this innovative project. Opportunities like this just don’t come along very often. But am sad to leave the BBC which has been home for so long.”
The pair previously hosted the BBC’s critically-acclaimed Americast podcast, which explored the state of US politics.
The news comes as the BBC sees a flurry of seasoned journalists leave positions.
BBC recently lost Andrew Marr to Global, whose LBC show is set to be announced soon.