The group president of Chinese firm Shanghai Media Group, Li Ruigang, has been “removed” from his post, according to local reports.
No reason was given for his departure, though he will remain as chairman of the company, which last year officially transitioned from a state-run company to an incorporated business, albeit one still affiliated with government.
Local reports speculate Ruigang may be seeking to focus more on government-backed investment fund China Media Capital, of which he is also chairman.
SMG has been an active international player, creating local versions of formats such as Got Talent, has a formats creation partnership with Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, and even worked up a local version of High School Musical with Disney China in 2009. Last year, it was working on a slate of animated kids series
The firm also controls various Chinese TV and radio channels, web TV platform BesTV and has worked with numerous US studios on content ventures in film and TV.
Ruigang has been chairman of SMG since 2002. The South China Morning Post reported sources calling him “China’s Rupert Murdoch”.