Holly Willoughby has revealed the shock news that she will not be returning to This Morning.
Walking away from a £1million-a-year contract and into the role of main presenter following the departure of Phillip Schofield was a bold but necessary decision for Holly, who cited her family as the main reason for her departure.
Although the star is expected to keep a low profile for a while, following the horrific news of an alleged kidnap and murder plot against her, ITV’s golden girl will no doubt be planning a comeback.
But will it be in front of the camera? Twenty years on screen is an impressive milestone for the star who started her career in children’s television, but after her year from hell, it may be time for a new chapter for the Willoughby brand.
Holly has been quietly working behind the scenes for years, securing a lucrative life outside the This Morning couch.
New ventures: Holly Willoughby has announced the shock news that she will not be returning to This Morning, but what’s next for ITV’s golden girl
Quit: Walking away from a £1million-a-year contract and the role of main presenter after Phillip Schofield’s departure was a bold but necessary decision for Holly, who cited her family as the main reason
While her departure was more sudden than anyone on the show had hoped, her side projects will help keep the star’s power steady.
Last month, the star celebrated the two-year anniversary of her lifestyle brand Wylde Moon.
Branding and culture expert Nick Ede believes Holly will now make the brand her focus.
“Once Holly feels more settled I think she will probably focus on her Wylde Moon brand and develop that even further,” he told MailOnline.
“It’s a lucrative business that makes her a lot of money and it’s her passion project.”
Launching in 2021, Wylde Moon is Holly’s tribute to Gwyneth Paltrow’s hugely powerful Goop brand – sending out weekly inspirational newsletters to subscribers and flogging £65 candles that will bring ‘Mother Nature’s Magic’ into your home.
When she posted a celebratory message on Instagram for her fellow ‘wylde one’s’ last month, Holly gushed that she “I like to share with you all those things that make my heart sing… from day 1 it was a space that felt important to me and over the past two years that feeling continues to grow.’
The Wylde Moon Instagram account has 181,000 followers, with Holly reportedly inspired to launch the brand after discovering a love of spirituality while in Australia presenting I’m A Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! back in 2018.
Passion project: Last month, the star celebrated the two-year anniversary of her lifestyle brand Wylde Moon
Two months before heading Down Under, Holly made headlines when she announced she was parting ways with Truly, a lifestyle brand founded by her boyfriend Dragon’s Den star Peter Jones, of which she would become the face.
She announced she was quitting the £10 million deal just a week before the website was due to launch, later telling Stella Magazine that she had become overwhelmed by juggling too many projects.
‘You can’t have everything. “I’ve had the most incredible opportunities this year, but it’s also overwhelming,” she explained.
‘It was really something I was very passionate about, but my husband has a very busy, busy job and I have three children and other projects. “My son Harry is really into football and I want to be able to take him there so she can do what he loves,” she said.
“I didn’t want to be in a position where I worked nights and couldn’t be with them. It’s not just about me having my dream and everyone else fitting in, it’s about me putting my family first and making that choice.”
Now that she has left her day-to-day role on This Morning, Holly will have more time to dedicate to her passion project, fitting in with the work between school rounds that she has long prioritised.
Nick Ede says the nature of the business means Holly doesn’t have to put herself directly in the spotlight, explaining: ‘It’s not as public facing, which means there’s less pressure on her and she can use her social media and can use her name to build the name. brand rather than personal appearances.”
Holly shares three children with her husband, TV producer Dan Baldwin Harry, 14, Belle, 12, and Chester, nine and has always prioritized her role as a mother.
Her hours on This Morning made it a dream role for a working mother, allowing her to pick up her children from school and take them to their evening playdates and clubs.
Then there were the school holidays offered by ITV, with the star taking three months off each summer to go to the family’s Portuguese villa.
Would she be willing to eat up that precious family time by taking on primetime TV roles?
Prime time: It’s yet to be confirmed if the star will be back in January to host Dancing On Ice, the Saturday night show that propelled her ITV career
It is yet to be confirmed whether the star will be back in January as presenter of Dancing On Ice, the Saturday night show that propelled her ITV career and her TV partnership with Phillip Schofield.
Kevin Lygo, director of media and entertainment at ITV, hinted that Holly may return in a statement released on Tuesday evening, calling her “a much-loved member of the ITV family” and saying: “we look forward to working with her continue to work together in the coming years. the future’.
Holly won’t have to decide for long whether she will return for the 2024 series, with the celebrity cast already announced.
As Holly returns to screens, she has made sure she makes as much money as possible from her lucrative contracts.
Three years ago, Holly left the showbiz agency she shared with former This Morning co-star Phillip and made plans to run herself.
Holly walked out of YMU, formerly known as James Grant, and has some big names on the books, including ITV superstars Ant and Dec.
She now manages herself through her own company Roxy Media Ltd, of which she and her husband are the sole directors. Holly owns 80 percent of the shares and Dan owns the remaining 20 percent.
The company is reportedly made up of an all-female team.
Family: Holly shares three children with her TV producer husband Dan Baldwin – Harry, 14, Belle, 12, and Chester, nine, and has always prioritized her role as a mother
Power couple: Holly manages herself through her own company Roxy Media Ltd, of which she and her husband are the sole directors – Holly owns 80 percent of the shares and Dan owns the remaining 20 percent
Holly was reportedly shocked by YMU’s claims that they were entitled to a percentage of her future earnings under a ‘sunset clause’.
Ede suggests this is the perfect time for Holly to build her management agency, telling MailOnline: ‘I see her developing Roxy Management and hiring more talent, both emerging and established, and together with her TV producer husband, a hub for talent creation, brand and content development.”
Dan, who already owns television production company Hungry Bear Media, has also started a new venture called HB Talent Agency.
In 2014, he founded his brand’s production arm, Hungry Bear Media, together with colleague Juliet Denison and Dragons Den star Peter Jones.
Accounts obtained by MailOnline in 2021 showed that Hungry Bear Media had around £3.4m in cash at the end of 2020, with at least £1.8m in assets.
Holly has been working on shows with Dan for years through Hungry Bear Media, most recently fronting Freeze The Fear With Wim Hof last spring.
BBC show: Holly has been working on shows with her husband Dan for years through his production company Hungry Bear Media, most recently fronting Freeze The Fear With Wim Hof last spring
The show married Holly’s Wylde Moon ethos when it challenged eight celebrities to take on daunting, cold challenges designed to push their minds and bodies to their limits.
Freeze The Fear aired on BBC One and marked a significant move away from ITV for the star. Working with Dan’s production company would also give the star much more control over her passion projects.
Ede says it’s an exciting future for Holly, whose brand remains largely intact.
“Holly is in a very special position where she is the brand and people are buying into it and her lifestyle as well.”
“She is such a shining light on our screens and other lifestyles that I can see her building her brands to become multi-million dollar companies with global reach.”