Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel announce they are leaving the BBC to launch new podcast and host LBC show together

The two BBC journalists announce they will be launching a new daily podcast and hosting a radio show together on LBC after signing a deal with Global

BBC Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis and North America editor Jon Sopel have announced they are leaving the corporation to launch a new podcast for Global Player and host a show on LBC radio together.

Details have not yet been revealed but they have signed a deal with LBC’s parent company, Global.

Their move comes following Andrew Marr’s at the end of 2021, who also moved from the BBC to Global.

On Twitter, Maitlis described the new daily podcast as an "amazing opportunity", adding that she and Sopel "are so thrilled Global is giving us this opportunity to be big and ambitious with this project".

Who are Emily Maitlis and Jon Sopel?

Sopel started his career at the BBC in 1983 and went on to become chief political correspondent for BBC News.

His reporting has taken him across the globe, covering stories such as the 2004 tsunami from Sri Lanka before he later became North America editor.

He had a famous exchange with President Trump at a 2017 press conference, and was in the spotlight in 2018 after a controversial off-air conversation with Radio 4 presenter John Humphrys about the BBC and equal pay.

He stood down as North America editor at the end of 2021.

Maitlis joined the BBC in 2001 and went on to present the news bulletins on BBC One.

She has fronted many live BBC News specials including election nights and the EU referendum.

Maitlis made headlines and won awards for her interview with Prince Andrew in 2019.

Together the pair worked as co-hosts of the BBC’s Americast podcast which launched in 2020.

The podcast has covered topics including the US elections and last year’s Capitol Hill riots, and has become one of the BBC’s most popular podcasts.

What have the pair said?

On Twitter, Maitlis wrote: “It will be a wrench to leave the BBC after 20 phenomenal years. I am so grateful for the opportunities I’ve had there."

Sopel tweeted: "Opportunities like this just don’t come along very often. But am sad to leave the BBC which has been home for so long."

"I leave with nothing but good feelings towards the Corporation, and wish all the best to my colleagues and friends there," he wrote.

What is their new venture with Global?

Global said full details of the pair’s new podcast would be announced later this year.

Maitlis suggested in a statement issued by the media company that it would "build on everything we’ve achieved with Americast over the last few years - and it will find new audiences and a new home with Global".

The pair will front a new podcast for Global Player, host a radio show together on LBC and provide commentary and analysis for the station’s website.

The two will be working with Dino Sofos, the founder and CEO of the audio production company Persephonica, a former head of BBC news podcasts and the creator of Brexitcast, Newscastand Americast.

What is Global Player and LBC?

Global Player allows listeners to enjoy all of Global’s radio brands, award-winning podcasts, video content, and expertly-curated playlists.

The Global Player app is entirely free and available worldwide.

LBC is the UK’s number one commercial talk brand, with 3.2m weekly listeners.

It is available across the UK on DAB digital radio and worldwide on Global Player on smart speakers, iOS or Android device, at LBC.co.uk, in London on 97.3 FM and on Sky TV.

What have colleagues said?

Jonathan Munro, interim director of BBC News, thanked the pair for their work at the corporation.

He said in a statement: "We’d like to thank both Emily and Jon for their many years of sterling service to the BBC and wish them the very best in their new endeavours at Global."

James Rea, director of broadcasting and content at Global, said: "They are both brilliant journalists and presenters and I know we’re going to build something hugely exciting together."

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