It may have just lost its chief exec to Microsoft, but Project Kangeroo is readying for launch.

Ashley Highfield announced he was leaving the BBC Worldwide, ITV and Channel 4 joint initiative after only 6 months in the job, but, although no permanent replacement has been found, the online VoD project is being pushed on.

According to new reports, the service could be launched in March 2009 launch.

WorldwideVodco, which is the holding company for the project, has now confirmed that Kangaroo is to go into Alpha testing next month (December).

The closed Beta testing phase will then begin in January and a month later, the Competition Commission is to publish its final review of the service.

Whilst all of this is happening, the man in charge will be Rod Henwod, the former Channel 4 new business director and interim chief executive of Kangaroo.

A spokesman for Kangaroo said: "The shareholders are now actively recruiting a new chief executive. This process will run concurrently with the Competition Commission process and an appointment will be announced post the final decision from the Competition Commission".