CEO

Pandora renews focus on ad revenue, names McAndrews new CEO

Thursday, September 12, 2013 - 12:55pm

There is an emphasis on advertising solutions this week.

Two days ago Songza closed a capital round of $4.7M for developing its “life moments” sponsorship platform. Yesterday Pandora announced its new CEO/Chairman appointment of Brian McAndrews to replace outgoing Joe Kennedy. Kennedy announced his intent to resign the company last March.

The selection sends a clear signal of Pandora’s intent to double down on monetization of its leadership position in Internet radio, so it’s no wonder that Pandora stock jumped nearly 10% this morning. McAndrews comes with a deep pedigree in digital advertising. As President and CEO of aQuantive, a digital marketing leader that was acquired by Microsoft in May, 2007, McAndrews became Redmond’s APS (Advertising and Publisher Solutions) lead. He comes to Pandora from a managing directorship at Madrona Venture Group, whose portfolio spans a wide range of Internet brands, from Amazon to Cheezburger.

One of McAndrews’ several board positions is at AppNexus, a major ad-buying platform whose CEO, Brian O’Kelley, is regarded as the inventor of ad exchanges. AppNexus executed $700M in advertising purchases in 2012, making it a competitor to Google. The company is rumored to be the next multi-billion dollar IPO.

McAndrews inherits Pandora as it owns leading share across markets (7.42% of total U.S. radio share), 72-million active users from a registered base of about 200-million, a relatively small music inventory of about a million tracks, proprietary recommendation and programming technology, some form of presence in over 100 car models, and a controversial attempt to reduce its statutory royalty payments to recording artists.

New Pandora chief McAndrews was first Ad Age "Digital Exec of the Year"

Thursday, September 12, 2013 - 12:55pm

Pandora late yesterday announced the appointment of former Madrona Venture Group and Microsoft exec Brian McAndrews as CEO, president, and chairman. He immediately succeeds Joe Kennedy, who in March announced his intention to step down.

McAndrews was recognized as Advertising Age's very first "Digital Exectutive of the Year." He is also former president and CEO of digital agency aQuantive, which he led from its roots as a small Seattle-based firm in 1999 to its $6 billion acquisition by Microsoft in 2007. After the purchase, McAndrews stayed on as an SVP running Microsoft's Advertiser & Publisher Solutions group.

Pandora founder and chief strategy officer Tim Westergren commented, "No one better understands the intersection of technology and advertising, which he clearly demonstrated during aQuantive’s meteoric rise. He has a recognized ability to set strategy, lead large teams and drive growth and innovation at great scale. He is also a natural cultural fit with Pandora."

TargetSpot, SiriusXM name new CEOs; HuffPo exec joins CCE digital team

Tuesday, April 30, 2013 - 11:50am

TargetSpot's Eyal Goldwerger (pictured) has stepped down as CEO as part of what's being called a "planned reorganization." He will continue to advise the company's board, and he remains a shareholder.

TargetSpot is the largest online audio sales network. Goldwerger delivered a "POV" address at RAIN Summit West earlier this month in Las Vegas (coverage of his speech, and audio, is in RAIN here). Goldwerger joined TargetSpot as CEO in 2009. CRO Mitch Kline and CTO Leigh Newsome will serve as "co-CEOs" to replace him.

News also broke this morning that satellite broadcaster SiriusXM Radio has named interim CEO James Meyer as Mel Karmazin's fulltime replacement as CEO, effective immediately.

Finally, Clear Channel Media and Entertainment has brought on former Huffington Post executive Brian Kaminsky as EVP of operations for the digital division.

10/3: Pittman named new Clear Channel CEO

Friday, December 23, 2011 - 11:00am

Bob Pittman has been named CEO of CC Media Holdings -- Clear Channel's parent company -- effective immediately. The company told RAIN the appointment is an endorsement of Pittman's digital initiatives, including building out web radio platform iHeartRadio. (read more here)

Promotion an endorsement of Pittman's digital initiatives, says company

Monday, October 3, 2011 - 11:00am

Bob Pittman, new CEO of Clear Channel Media Holdings

Bob Pittman has been named CEO of CC Media Holdings -- Clear Channel's parent company -- effective immediately. The company told RAIN the appointment is an endorsement of Pittman's digital initiatives, including building out web radio platform iHeartRadio.

"He has already generated a renewed sense of confidence and direction not only at Clear Channel, but across the entire radio and media landscape,” said Scott Sperling, co-president of THL Partners.

Pittman joined Clear Channel in November 2010 as an investor and Chairman of Media and Entertainment Platforms (RAIN coverage here). Since then Clear Channel has relaunched iHeartRadio as a customizable web radio service (powered in part by the acquisition of Thumbplay in March, more here). That new service will soon join Pandora on Ford and Toyota dashboards (more here and here).

Pittman, 57, has served as CEO of AOL Networks and was co-founder and CEO of MTV.

As CEO of CC Media Holdings, Pittman will oversee Clear Channel Radio and Outdoor Holdings. He takes over from Mark Mays, who announced over a year ago he would step down (but remain chairman of CC Media Holdings). The L.A. Times reports (here) Pittman is "the first head of Clear Channel...not from the founding Mays family."

You can find Clear Channel's press release here.

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