Hazlitt is given top advertising job at ITV

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The Independent Online

The new chief executive of ITV, Adam Crozier, has made his second key appointment, hiring the former chief executive of the radio group GCap.

Fru Hazlitt, who has also held leadership roles at Virgin Radio and Yahoo UK, will take up the newly-created role of managing director of commercial and online on 2 August.

ITV was further boosted yesterday by a revised forecast from analysts at Group M, the parent company of media agency WPP who predicted that television advertising revenues would climb by 11.6 per cent to £3.3bn this year, instead of an overall decline as previously stated.

Mr Crozier, a former chief executive of Royal Mail who joined ITV in April, said: "My priority on arriving at ITV was to put in place the top team to deliver the strategy that will transform the company over the next three to five years. Fru's background in general management, her proven commercial skills and her online experience with Yahoo make her the ideal candidate for this pivotal new role."

She is the second major hiring by Mr Crozier. Last month he appointed Kevin Lygo, ex-director of programming at Channel 4, to run ITV Studios.

Ms Hazlitt's new job will unite ITV's airtime sales and online businesses and will fill the gap to be left by Rupert Howell, the managing director of brand and commercial, and Ben McOwen-Wilson, the managing director of online and interactive, who are both leaving this summer. Mr Howell will be the ninth director to leave ITV since December as the new chairman, Archie Norman, and Mr Crozier stamp their mark on the company.

While Ms Hazlitt has experience in print, the internet and sales, she is new to TV – as are Mr Norman and Crozier. Ms Hazlitt has not held an executive role since she left Gcap after it was bought by Global Radio in April 2008. She has been a non-executive director at the online bookmaker Betfair and at the Rare Tea Company.

Group M raised its forecast for the wider UK ad market in 2010 from flat to 4.2 per cent growth.