Newsletter

Movers and Shakers: Beeswax, TrustedHousesitters, Curve, The Specialist Works and more

David Murphy

The mobile marketing industry is ever-changing, and that applies to the people as much as the technology. Movers & Shakers is our regular feature following the hottest hires in the industry, so you can keep track of who’s joined which company, and what they’re doing there.

Clockwise from top left: James Hamlin, Natalia Avdeeva, Martin Poole, Amanda Orson, Kevin Kirby, Sridhar Guthula

New CRO and CMO for Beeswax
Beeswax has named Bill Schild, formerly of WeWork and Viant, as its chief revenue officer, and Paul Knegten, formerly of MediaMath and Yahoo!, as its chief marketing officer. Both executives bring over a decade of programmatic and ad tech experience to Beeswax, having led their functional roles through hypergrowth across multiple companies.

Schild brings more than 20 years of sales leadership and business development experience to Beeswax. He most recently served as VP, global enterprise key accounts at WeWork, where he was responsible for setting the overall strategic vision to support growth and market share. In his previous role as EVP at Viant Inc., his expertise around data and technology directly translated into exponential growth for the Viant Advertising Cloud, ultimately leading to the 2016 sale to Time Inc.

Knegten brings a combination of start-up and ad tech experience, having most recently co-founded Amitree, an Accel-backed email technology company. Prior to that, he served as VP marketing at Demand-Side Platform MediaMath, ran marketing at Dapper (acquired by Yahoo!) and has held executive advisor roles at several ad tech companies including Drawbridge, which was acquired by LinkedIn.
"Despite headwinds, programmatic advertising continues to grow at double-digit rates,” said Beeswax CEO, Ari Paparo. “We are focused on delivering transparent buying solutions to the most sophisticated companies in the ecosystem, and Bill and Paul are going to be a big part of making that happen.”

Three C-level hires for TrustedHousesitters
House- and pet-sitting platform TrustedHousesitters has announced a string of new hires across its senior leadership team as it seeks to drive expansion in its key markets.

James Hamlin, former MD of TaskRabbit joins as chief growth officer, while Natalia Avdeeva, former digital product VP of WikiTribune is appointed chief product officer. They are joined by Martin Poole, former group financial controller of Inspiring Learning, who becomes chief financial officer.

Alongside chief technology officer Will Ogden, they will form the senior leadership team under Mathew Prior, who has been confirmed as CEO after taking on the role in an interim basis last year. Cath Keers has also been appointed to the TrustedHousesitters board as chairman. A former MD of niche travel businesses at Travelopia and TUI, Prior brings with him two decades of expertise in leading digitally-focused global leisure brands, including Crystal Ski, Le Boat, Sunsail and The Moorings.

TrustedHousesitters connects pet owners with like-minded sitters who provide free in-house pet care in return for a place to stay. The platform, which currently has 80,000 members, has enjoyed 50 per cent year-on-year growth since 2017, alongside a recent 70 per cent surge in US customers, making it the company’s largest and highest-growth market. It also boasts a strong retention rate of 70 per cent, and to date, has facilitated over 4m nights of house and pet sitting globally, which it estimates has saved members close to half a billion pounds in travel, accommodation and pet care costs. The business was acquired by private equity firm Rockpool Investments in October 2018.

“I’m truly thrilled to be at TrustedHousesitters during such an exciting time in their growth,” said Prior. “I believe we’re only scratching the surface of the market opportunity. With my direction and the new executive management team, I’m confident we will continue to drive growth across our key markets, providing an innovative solution to a problem millions of pet owners face.”

Curve hires Orson to run its first US office
Over-the-top banking platform Curve has opened its first United States office, in Brooklyn, and hired Amanda Orson as VP, head of North America, to run it. She will take on responsibility for establishing Curve’s US business and growing the US team.

The company said it will create 185 new jobs in the U.S by 2024 and invest close to $17m (£13.1m) in research and development over the next decade. Since Curve launched in European markets in 2018, more than 900,000 users have signed up for a Curve card, and more than £1.2bn has been spent on the Curve platform.

“In the race to own the consumer relationship, Curve is building the perfect product for the US market at just the right time,” Orson said. “US consumers aren’t clamouring for a different, or additional, bank – they want their financial products to provide a better user experience. Curve’s all-in-one value proposition, ease of use, and obsession on customer experience are exactly what the US market needs. I am honoured to join the team and lead Curve’s product expansion in the United States…recruiting from a pool of the best tech talent in the world.”

Ex-Mindshare director Kirby joins The Specialist Works
Independent media and marketing services agency The Specialist Works has appointed ex-Mindshare director Kevin Kirby as group online media director. Kirby, most recently director of digital operations at Mindshare, will help The Specialist Works continue to drive online media delivery excellence, shape the agency’s online proposition and provide consultancy to clients. He will lead the agency’s online teams in London and Bristol.

Kirby started his career in online media at i-level, before moving to roles with GroupM and Dentsu Aegis Network. Most recently, he worked as the data strategist on the Unilever account at Mindshare and has worked in various digital roles during his 15-year career, across planning, strategy and operations.

He said: “I’ve admired The Specialist Works for a number of years. The investment the agency has made in data and technology, alongside specialist talent, makes it a particularly exciting time to join. They have ambitious growth plans, and I’m up for the challenge.”

The hire of Kirby comes as the agency announces changes to the group management structure of the business. Tim Neligan will take the role of chief operating officer and oversee the group functions of the business including trading and finance. He retains responsibility of the main agency.

Parry Jones will assume the newly created role of Deputy CEO and focus on acquisitions, joint ventures and developing The Specialist Works’ international planning and buying capabilities. He will focus on delivering growth initiatives, new products and strategy around entering new markets with a key focus on building partnerships that benefit the agency’s growth-minded client base. Martin Woolley, CEO will continue to focus on identifying strategic growth opportunities and client solutions.

Bloomberg Media hires two
Bloomberg Media has hired Patrick Garrigan as global head of Bloomberg Live, and Duncan Chater as European head of sales.
Garrigan arrives at Bloomberg with over 15 years’ event experience and a proven track-record of taking revenue-driving, cross-platform initiatives from ideation to implementation. He was previously at The Atlantic, where he was executive director of Business Development for AtlanticLIVE, leading event innovation and client partnership strategies. Prior to that, he was director of events for POLITICO, and vice president at experiential marketing agency MAG. He is also the co-author of Guerrilla Marketing for Dummies. He starts on 2 March, based in New York.

Chater, who will be based in Londin, has spent the past 20 years in various roles at Hearst Media, including publisher of Esquire UK, Men’s Health, Women’s Health, and the first-ever chief revenue officer for Hearst UK. He is a proven and versatile leader who has led multi-disciplined teams of up to 200 people. Most recently he was global vice president of Hearst Digital, overseeing digital multi-market revenues for 50 Hearst brands in 84 different markets and establishing global digital content studios services in New York, London and Milan.

Tamir takes up growth role at Consumer Acquisition
ConsumerAcquisition.com has named Or Tamir as its vice president, growth and client services. He will focus on the company's customer success program, in addition to managing its Facebook, Google and Apple relationships.

Consumer Acquisition CEO Brian Bowman said: “As we expand our creative studio, managed services and AdRules SaaS platform, we continue to build a world-class team of professionals to provide better product and service satisfaction among our clients. Or brings tremendous knowledge from his tenure growing accounts and deepening client relationships with Maggala Partners, Moburst, abaGada, and Plarium. We look forward to his leadership in client growth and satisfaction, as well as product adoption, with a high standard of excellence.”

ZypMedia hires two to strengthen product and engineering team
ZypMedia, a programmatic OTT platform designed for local advertisers has added to its product and engineering team with the appointment of Tushar Patel as SVP of engineering, and Sridhar Guthula as SVP of product management. Both will report to co-founder and chief technology officer, Ramandeep Ahuja.

Patel brings to the role a deep knowledge of enterprise software solutions. He has more than 20 years’ experience leading teams of various sizes through rapid growth, while instilling various influential software engineering advancements. Prior to joining ZypMedia, he served as an EVP at IPG Mediabrands for four years, two of which were spent with Cadreon, IPG Mediabrand’s ad tech unit. He also held VP roles at Xtime, Velti, Mochila, and Cyanea, and holds a Master’s degree in computer science from Columbia University.

With more than 25 years’ experience, Guthula has worked across a variety of industries, including hospitality, media, cloud and security software platforms. He has spent much of his career leading the roll-out of high-performing products. Most recently, he served as CEO of WelcomeTV, which provides innovative guest engagement solutions for short-term rental properties. Prior to that, he held management positions at SONIFI Solutions and Motorola. He has a Master’s degree in business from Carnegie Mellon University.

Patel and Guthula will be responsible for scaling the product and development teams across North America, Europe, and Asia. The ZypMedia platform is used by leading local media companies supporting over 40,000 advertisers running over 100,000 campaigns each year. With a focus on helping traditional broadcast media companies reach their shifting audience on OTT, the platform has a reach of over 90m households and more than 620m unique devices.

“ZypMedia’s success is predicated on our full stack, low latency platform that was built from the ground up for local media,” said Ahuja. “In order for us to remain the de facto leader in the local market, digital and OTT media it is vital that we continue to innovate and expand our platform capabilities. To do this, we need the best talent possible. Both Tushar and Sridhar are exceptional individuals with decades of experience leading product and engineering teams at both established and growth companies, and we look forward to bringing their capabilities to ZypMedia.”

Avantgarde promotes two
Brand experience agency Avantgarde London has promoted Tessa Mardon to the role of head of client services, and Rory Sloan to operations director.

Moving away from her prior role as business director, Mardon will now focus on building strong relationships with senior clients, getting under the skin of their business and brand objectives, in order to help the agency add more strategic value. She will manage both the Client Service and Project Management teams, whilst developing their brand experience expertise and identifying commercial opportunities with existing accounts to help drive growth.

Sloan, previously production director at the agency, will now support MD Stuart Bradbury in the day-to-day operational running of the agency. Alongside this, he will direct and control all production, purchasing and internal processes for the agency.

“As existing, invaluable members of the Avantgarde London team, the promotions of Tess and Rory come at a vital time as we continue to go from strength to strength,” said Bradbury. “Rory will support our growth plans and Tessa will lead senior client relationships, building and sustaining long-term partnerships that will shore up the agency’s future.”

Vandenberg takes up sales and partnership role at OpenSlate
OpenSlate, which provides video content ratings across the world's largest digital platforms, has hired Stephanie Vandenberg as senior vice president of sales, brand and agency partnerships. She brings over two decades of media and ad tech experience to OpenSlate, where she will spearhead growth by driving new brand partnerships and client-retention initiatives, while overseeing the company’s sales strategy.

Prior to joining OpenSlate, Vandenberg served as the senior vice president & head of agency partnerships at omnichannel marketing platform, NinthDecimal, where she secured partnerships across agency holding companies, resulting in significant growth. Before that, she was a global sales director at CNET, where she drove growth for the publication’s international news and digital content sites through strategic partnerships with brands including Oracle and Samsung.

She said: "OpenSlate has a strategic and innovative approach to supporting today's top brand advertisers and agencies. The development of new agency partnerships will help strengthen our position and ultimately align our business goals with the entire media ecosystem. I'm thrilled to join their team and contribute to the company’s continued growth in the marketplace."

Lock takes non-exec position at Medialab Group
Data marketing partnership, Medialab Group, has appointed Amice Lock as a non-executive director. An established marketing strategist, she has over 18 years’ experience in strategic planning, cultural understanding and management, supporting clients such as Bauer Media, Sony Music, Samsung, Harper Collins and Knight Frank. Her previous roles include head of planning at Starcom MediaVest and managing director of LiquidThread, Starcom’s branded content division. Lock left the media agency world in 2014 to set up her own consultancy business, Amice Lock Consulting, which she will continue to run on a day-to-day basis. She initially joined Medialab on a consultancy basis earlier this year and will now be involved in policy-making decisions and planning exercises within the company.

“After experiencing the positive impact Amice had amongst the team in a short space of time, we are delighted to extend and formalise our relationship with her,” said Medialab CEO, Marcus Orme. “Amice will continue to keep us on our toes – asking testing questions which force us to think about how we do business in a way which best reflects needs of our client partners and our values. Her input brings a fresh perspective which can only benefit our clients.”

Medialab Group is a high growth, independent data marketing partnership that consistently delivers transformative outcomes for organisations we believe in. We do this by creating insights from data to gain and grow valuable customers through customer insight, marketing execution and campaign attribution, designed by talent our partners trust.

Tapmydata CEO Hill to chair DMA Responsible Marketing Committee
Gilbert Hill, CEO of Tapmydata, has been named as the new Chair of the Data & Marketing Association (DMA)’s Responsible Marketing Committee – the group tasked with helping to shape and define the DMA’s policies on the activities of marketers and what constitutes responsible and ethical practices in the industry.

As his tenure begins, Hill called for the data and marketing industry to embrace privacy as a differentiator rather than a compliance issue: “Too many organisations still view their obligations as just that; a set of things they have to do,” he said. “A narrow view of compliance as simply a set of legal obligations undermines the values of accountability, fairness and transparency that underpin these rules.

“All organisations can benefit from putting the customer first. Value them, understand their needs and use your insights to offer them enhanced services. Don’t do it because the law says you should, or even because a code of practice advises it, that will only perpetuate the problems. Create a new belief system within your organisation and sustainable future for your business by promoting responsible marketing as a driver for growth. Do it because it’s right. Right for you, your organisation, your industry and, most importantly, your customers.”

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