Source The Age Jesse Hogan  

REGIONAL television broadcaster WIN has appointed a long-time News Corporation television executive to help manage its recent expansion.

David Butorac, 45, agreed late last year to leave News' Star TV in Hong Kong to become WIN's managing director, and yesterday "got his feet under the desk" for the first time.

Mr Butorac worked at London's BSkyB pay TV network for 14 years until 2002 — including a five-month secondment to Australia in 1995 for the Foxtel launch — and later was chief operating officer for Astro in Malaysia and a president at Star TV.

"I'm Australian but left to go backpacking in Europe 21 years ago and didn't quite get round to coming home, and in the intervening period I've had the privilege of working for some pretty major broadcast companies around the world," he said. "All Australians travelling, sooner or later, need to make it home."

WIN owner Bruce Gordon said Mr Butorac had "a level of knowledge that will allow us to continue the strong growth we have already achieved and take us to the next level in the multimedia world".

The appointment will result in WIN having a managing director and a chief executive, George Papadopoulos, but Mr Butorac said this was solely a result of WIN's recent expansion (it bought Channel Nine stations in Adelaide and Perth last year).

"As companies expand, the executive function of the company needs to expand with it … and I was pretty pleased Bruce and Andrew (Gordon, WIN chairman) thought I could add something to the executive," Mr Butorac said.

WIN also owns pay TV provider SelecTV, radio stations and TV production company Crawfords.

Mr Butorac said his experience in large, cross-media businesses meant WIN was a good fit, and he was keen to help the transition to digital broadcasting.

"Digital ultimately provides huge opportunities but also creates huge demands on broadcasters, and having worked within digital broadcast companies for the past 20 years, I think I'm able to, if nothing else, know the pitfalls that we want to try to avoid," he said.