Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Culture | By Stewart Greene

Fox News ends relationship with Bill O'Reilly, O'Reilly responds

Fox News ends relationship with Bill O'Reilly, O'Reilly responds

O'Reilly's exit came nine months after his former boss, Fox News CEO Roger Ailes, was ousted following allegations of sexual harassment.

A staunch supporter of President Donald Trump, O'Reilly has been an anchor at Fox News since he started at the network in 1996.

Attorney Lisa Bloom, who represents Wendy Walsh and other accusers of Bill O'Reilly, declared victory on the news that the Fox News host will not return to the network. Just hours before Bill O'Reilly was sacked by Fox News amid sexual harassment allegations on Wednesday, April 19, he was shaking hands with the holiest person in the world - The Pope!

The move comes following an April 1 report from the "New York Times" that O'Reilly and Fox News paid $13 million (12.2 million euro) to five different women over a period of 15 years, settling sexual harassment suits and allegations of inappropriate conduct.

Fox News has officially cut ties with its biggest prime time star, Bill O'Reilly, following sexual harassment claims lodged against him.

The veteran presenter, 67, said at the time that he had settled only to spare his children from the controversy.

21st Century Fox stock dropped following the announcement of O'Reilly's departure from Fox News, closing at $30.39 a share, down 0.88 percent for the day.

His show generated $178 million in advertising revenue in 2015, according to Kantar Media.

But after the New York Times report, advertisers including BMW of North America, Allstate Corp, French pharmaceuticals maker Sanofi SA and T. Rowe Price, pulled their advertising from O'Reilly's primetime "The O'Reilly Factor" show.

TheBlaze founder (and former Fox News host) weighed in on the sexual harassment allegations against O'Reilly, saying that the The O'Reilly Factor host was likely in his final 24 hours at Fox News.

O'Reilly and his lawyer have denied that he acted inappropriately. For that reason, some female employees were uncomfortable with O'Reilly staying on, and pressure escalated once the company asked a law firm to examine the allegations.

In a statement released Wednesday, O'Reilly said he was "extremely proud to launch and lead one of the most successful news programs in history".

So far, Fox News has marched on - seemingly as strong as ever - without Ailes, Van Susteren and Kelly. It's the top-rated show on the No. 1 cable network - one that, according to the investment bank Nomura's estimates, accounts for fully 20 percent of profits at 21st Century Fox.

"They could literally go dark during the time his program airs and they would still be profitable", Mr Wieser said.

Ruddy, of Newsmax, said Wednesday, "I think Bill O'Reilly was the heart and soul of that network, and he has unparalleled and unchallenged talent".

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