The chief executive of All3Media reportedly earned a multimillion-pound bonus for selling up to the American billionaire John Malone.
Newly published accounts have revealed that Farah Ramzan Golant, who took up the role in November 2012 and stepped down less than two years later when the £550m takeover was completed, was paid £4.3m last year, according to documents filed at Companies House. That compares with salary and benefits of £523,000 for the preceding year.
All3Media was born out of Granada television, with three former execs of the Manchester-based company setting it up in 2002. Through a number of acquisitions, they built it into a super indie, with reported revenues in August 2013 of £505m.
It was previously Britain’s biggest independent production company before being acquired in September by a joint venture between Discovery Communications, the US media company behind the Discovery Channel, and Liberty Global, owner of the cable operator Virgin Media. Both giants are controlled by Mr Malone.
The deal was part of a rapid consolidation in the television industry, as the industry’s big players seek greater international scale and ownership of content rights.