Simon Cowell defends Nick Grimshaw hiring: 'No one knew who I was'

Simon Cowell has defended his decision to hire BBC Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw for 'The X Factor' because "nobody knew who he was" when he joined the 'Pop Idol' panel

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Nick Grimshaw

Nick Grimshaw

Simon Cowell has defended his decision to hire Nick Grimshaw for 'The X Factor'.

The 55-year-old music mogul faced criticism by some fans when he announced the BBC Radio 1 DJ would be joining the judging panel alongside himself, Rita Ora and Cheryl Fernandez-Versini.

He said: "When I first appeared on TV, nobody knew who I was. I just ran a record label. I actually never even got paid the first time I did 'Pop Idol'. But I thought: God, this is amazing, I can sit on a show and find artists. It's fantastic ...

"I have an issue with artists judging other artists. I would never allow a group of artists to run the record label. That would be crazy. You have to balance it up a bit."

The 'X Factor' judge also revealed fans could expect a "raft of changes" in the new series.

He added to The Sun newspaper: "It's got to lighten up. It all got a bit heavy last year. The important thing is that we have got to concentrate on the talent because that is what's going to make the difference.

"I know everyone focuses on the judges but I think we have to focus on the contestants. I've got some ideas and I'm excited about what's coming."

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