Lord Alan Sugar has been appointed as the new non-executive chairman of the BBC-led YouView IPTV service, replacing Kip Meek who was less than eight months in the position.
YouView, which is backed by BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Channel Five, TalkTalk, BT and Arqiva, has been running into delays since its conception, with rumours suggesting that the makers are having some technological issues.
Lord Sugar's established background in product marketing and technology delivery will be of great help to YouView.
Commenting on the appointment, Meek said, “It has been apparent for some time that the YouView board would benefit from additional expertise in consumer marketing and technology delivery. Lord Sugar clearly supplies this.”
“As the venture progresses towards launch, the change in Chairman makes sense. I wish Lord Sugar well,” he added.
Set-top boxes powered with YouView software are expected to launch by the end of this year. Lord Sugar has an immense task ahead of him, having to oversee the launch of the set-top boxes and improve the service's image in the eyes of the public.
YouView will have to speed up if it wants to shore-up its web based TV market share before rivals take advantage of the delays. The service was expected to be launched by the end of 2010 but it was pushed back to 2011. Now the service has been further delayed until early 2012.