SBS is hoping to announce its new Director of Television and Content by the end of the year.
The key role has been vacant since July with new Managing Director Michael Ebeid overseeing the recruitment process.
At the SPAA Conference on Monday, Ebeid told delegates he was in no rush to fill the role as SBS already has a fantastic content team.
Peter Newman, who was appointed Head of Production and Development in June, also resigned last month to join independent producers WTFN.
Several sources tell TV Tonight that three people have already turned down the role of Director of Television but an SBS Spokesperson says the broadcaster is still recruiting for the two roles.
“There has been no shortage of people expressing an interest in the position but it hasn’t been formally offered to anyone,” they said.
“The search continues, consideration of a shortlist is imminent.”
It’s been a tough time at SBS, losing the Tour Down Under to Nine last week, and facing its all-important triennial funding next May. But the broadcaster has always faced challenges against the three commercials and the better-funded ABC.
In the coming weeks its has several highlights that will offer alternatives to summer’s off-season including the family, Danger 5, Who Do You Think You Are? and Once Upon a Time in Cabramatta.
“SBS’s future direction and the importance of why we need to be very clear about who we are and what we stand for,” Ebeid told the SPAA Conference.
“It’s essential that SBS be very distinctive to stand out in a cluttered marketplace and I will share both our content strategy with you, and will demonstrate how we are using our new commissioning values to more clearly define what we mean by being more ‘distinctive’.
“And today I would like to reinforce to the production sector that SBS is most definitely ‘open for business’ – actively looking for new content ideas that will help us deliver our ambition to grow our audiences and to make more content that reflects our Charter.”
Update: An SBS spokesperson denies TV Tonight’s story and maintains it has a shortlist of talented candidates, saying: “SBS categorically refutes that anyone has been offered the job or turned it down.”