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SBS chief steps down after seven years

michael ebeid sbs

SBS chief Michael Ebeid is stepping down after more than seven years at the helm of the public broadcaster.

During his time with SBS, it has launched NITV and Food Network, and entered into long-term rights agreements for the FIFA World Cup and Tour de France, and deals for the English Premier League and A-League.

"My decision to step down has been one of the most difficult decisions I've made," Mr Ebeid said in a statement on Tuesday.

"Serving as the SBS managing director has been a real honour and privilege and I depart feeling confident that this is the right time for a new managing director to take the organisation forward."

He said SBS was the strongest it has been in more than four decades.

"Considering the struggle of societies globally to integrate diverse communities harmoniously, SBS today performs a critical role in the Australian community."

SBS board chairman Dr Bulent Hass Dellal paid tribute to Mr Ebeid: "He departs an organisation which is stronger, sustainable and backed by an important and valued purpose to contribute to the ongoing social and economic development of our nation through media services which foster greater understanding and encourage social cohesion."

An average 13 million Australians each month engage with the network's channels.

Mr Ebeid, who in 2017 was made a Member of the Order of Australia for services to broadcast media and multicultural affairs, will leave on October 1.

He is expected to make an announcement in coming weeks about his next role.

The SBS board will immediately begin a recruitment process to replace him.

© AAP 2018 Photo credit: AAP Image/Mick Tsikas