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Sky Italia picks Vodafone exec Duilio as new CEO

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Sky logo is seen at the exterior of the Sky Italia buildings on the outskirts of Milan, Italy, April 27, 2016. REUTERS/ Stefano Rellandini/File Photo

MILAN, July 26 (Reuters) - Comcast-owned (CMCSA.O) Sky Italia has appointed Vodafone executive director Andrea Duilio as its new chief executive effective Sept. 6, the media company said on Monday.

Duilio, 47, who heads Vodafone's consumer business unit in Italy, emerged as a top contender among external candidates for the Sky job in Italy, two people told Reuters last week.

He will succeed Maximo Ibarra who stepped down in April and will report to Stephen van Rooyen, CEO of Sky's UK and European operations.

"Duilio's experience will give an important push to the innovation and growth of Sky Italia, completing the transition towards a leaner and integrated business model with the group," van Rooyen said in a note.

Sky Italia, which is Italy's top pay-TV player, earlier this year suffered a blow when top-flight soccer league Serie A awarded the bulk of domestic screening rights to streaming services DAZN, which sealed a distribution agreement with Italy's biggest phone group Telecom Italia (TLIT.MI).

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Reporting by Cristina Carlevaro, editing by Agnieszka Flak

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