Journalist and broadcaster Robert Peston has revealed ITV pays him over a third more than the BBC.
The 55-year-old left his role of economics editor at the BBC to become the the ITV political editor following a bidding war between the two channels.
In an interview with the Sunday Times, Peston explained he was being paid “nothing remotely” like the figure of £750,000 but confessed his new deal was worth “more than a third more” than his BBC pay.
“Obviously the money matters, but this was about challenge, about getting more fun in my life, and this is fun,” Peston said.
Peston made a name for himself covering the financial crisis of the late-2000s and breaking the Northern Rock upheaval in 2007.
Bidding farewell to a nine-year spell at the BBC, his new political interview programme Peston on Sunday will put him in direct competition with the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show.
Although ITV has seen some improvement in recent years, the ITV 10pm bulletin still garners markedly fewer viewers than the BBC’s flagship news programme. While ITV gets an average of 1.92 million viewers, the BBC amasses an average of 4.3 million.
Speaking to the Guardian about the rivalry in January, the journalist said: “Now I’m here I want [ITV] news to humiliate the BBC, get better scoops, win viewers … We are not going to be an existential threat to the BBC but we are going to give them a bloody good run for their money.”
Before being appointed as part of ITV’s revamped news cast, Preston applied to be to be controller of Radio 4 and editor of the Guardian.
The North London-born broadcaster has had a colourful career, which has seen him move from stockbroker to journalist at The Independent during its launch in 1986, making his way through many of the broadsheets, before finally going on to work at the BBC in 2005.
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