ACM installs Tony Kendall as MD as Allen Williams departs

Following Allen Williams’ announcement that he is departing his role as managing director of Australian Community Media (ACM), the organisation has now announced a raft of changes to its executive team.

Chief revenue officer Tony Kendall will take on the new role of managing director, with his old role being taken on by current enterprise sales director Sharon Fitter.

Meanwhile, chief financial officer, Renee Duffy, will expand her remit to include the chief operating officer functions of human resources, HSE, operations, printing and logistics.

Duffy and Kendall will both report directly to ACM executive chairman Antony Catalano. Williams will finish up on December 18.

Tony Kendall is now managing director of ACM

Williams spent more than 30 years with the company, and in a note to staff last month, chairman Catalano said he was “disappointed” about the CEO’s departure.

Kendall joined ACM in 2019, having previously served as CEO of Australian Radio Network (ARN) and then as chief revenue officer of APN News & Media (later HT&E). Prior to that, he spent 23 years in sales roles at News Corp.

Catalano said the new roles for Kendall and Duffy will be crucial for ACM moving forward.

“I am delighted to announce the promotion of both Tony and Renee to these critical roles as we continue the evolution of the ACM business,” he said.

Catalano cited Kendall’s success in helping transform ACM’s commercial offering in his time at the organisation, and noted Duffy’s role in transitioning ACM from Nine/Fairfax into a leading independent media company.

“Under Tony and Renee’s leadership I believe we have the experience and talent to fast track the growth and evolution of our existing business as we seek to connect our large and valuable audiences with our compelling and trusted content,” he said.

“I’d also like to recognise the great work that Sharon Fitter has done in building a market leading Enterprise sales team that has helped the business transition out of COVID with momentum.

“It’s fantastic that we have this high calibre talent inside the business and I wish Sharon all the best as our new CRO.”

Renee Duffy and Sharon Fitter

Ahead of his new role, Kendall said; “I’ve loved my time at ACM and the growth mindset that Antony brings to the business, which is rare in today’s media landscape.

“I couldn’t be happier to be taking on the role of managing director and I look forward to working with the ACM executive and the broader team as we look to drive this business forward.”

Duffy said she’s never been more excited to be with ACM. “Having worked at ACM or the various iterations of itself for 17 years, I’ve seen many things change, but I’ve never been more excited to be with this company and I embrace the opportunity these new responsibilities present.

“Tony and I have worked closely over the last 18 months and achieved many things, but we know what’s on the horizon and we can’t wait to get into 2021 leading this company together.”

Fitter added that it’s an honour to be given the opportunity as chief revenue officer.

“Having worked for many years in the Enterprise sales area, I can’t wait to get stuck into the other commercial parts of the business including national sales and partnerships.

“We have a team that is in my view the best in market and I’m looking forward to bringing my many years of sales experience to ACM more broadly.”


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