Therese Hegarty to depart Seven Studios

Therese Hegarty.

Seven Studios CEO Therese Hegarty is departing in a restructure after eight years with the Seven Network.

Her position has been abolished and the production unit’s operations will be run by Seven director of production Andrew Backwell.

Seven West Media described her exit as part of an ongoing transformation resulting from the significant financial and operational impact of COVID-19.

In a statement, the highly regarded executive said: “I have been privileged to work with such an incredible team of talented, generous people, many of whom I am proud to call friends, across the eight years and various roles I have held at Seven.

“I’d like to express my sincere thanks to all of them. I’m very sad to be leaving Seven but look forward to new challenges in the future.”

SWM MD/CEO James Warburton said: “Therese has been a true asset to the business, delivering a wealth of knowledge and experience during her time at Seven. I’ve enjoyed working with her over the past eight months and wish her all the best.”

Striving to reduce the company’s heavy debt, in February Warburton announced he had appointed investment bank Morgan Stanley to conduct a strategic review of Seven Studios after receiving a number of “partnership inquiries.”

There had been expressions of interest from such international players as the Banijay Group, ITV Studios, Comcast’s NBCUniversal and The Walt Disney Company, IF understands.

Hegarty, who will remain with the business for an interim period to ensure a smooth transition, joined Seven as head of production and rights management in 2012 after 11 years with Beyond Television, where she was VP production, business.

She was promoted to director, content rights and distribution in 2014 and to CEO of Seven Studios a year ago.

During her tenure, Seven secured numerous commissions and co-productions with platforms including Netflix, Amazon, Facebook and the BBC.

The Sydney-based slate includes the temporarily suspended Home and Away and Back to the Rafters as well as House Rules, Plate of Origin, Better Homes and Gardens, the upcoming drama Between Two Worlds and narrative comedy Fam Time.