Movers and Shakers: Mindshare, Leanplum, Just Eat, and more

Tyrone Stewart

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 left to right) Kristiina Railo, Laura Ponniah, Kate FitzGerald, David Yaffe, Ryan Christensen, Carlos Fuentes

Duo join Mindshare’s UK arm
Mindshare UK, which is part of WPP, has appointed Kristiina Railo as head of new business and marketing, while hiring Laura Ponniah as role of partner for Grow@Mindshare.

Railo will be responsible for taking Mindshare UK’s audience-first proposition to market, and ensuring that the benefits to brands of proprietary tools including DX are clearly communicated in a competitive marketplace. She has also been tasked with driving new business growth for the agency in key sectors such as finance and retail.

She joins from GroupM Finland, where she held the role of digital growth director and led the launch of the mContent department. Prior to joining GroupM, she was CEO at Vapa Media Oy and has also held senior leadership roles at OMD Finland.

Ponniah will lead Mindshare UK’s full-service agency for fast growth brands, where she will guide the division’s overarching strategy.

Previously, she was head of client growth and innovation at Publicis Media Content. She has also held senior roles at Zenith International and spent a number of years at UM International.

“These two senior hires will be pivotal in the next phase of growth for Mindshare, as we look to double-down on what makes our audience-first approach so effective for brands looking for tangible results,” said Helen McRae, Mindshare UK CEO.

“Kristiina is a force of nature, which is just what you need to be to lead a successful new business and marketing department. She brings with her deep experience in running digital operations, which means she also understands from the inside out what will make the biggest difference to our clients.

“Lara’s expertise makes her the perfect addition to the Grow team. In a division focused on helping fast growth brands build their business and brand, her skills across content, media, creative and analytics will be invaluable. I’m thrilled that both these talented individuals have joined Mindshare and look forward to working alongside them.”

Leanplum names FitzGerald as president
Kate FitzGerald has become president of multichannel engagement platform Leanplum, where she will look to use her experience to drive success across the company’s sales, alliances, business development, customer success, marketing, human resources, and finance organisations.

Prior to joining Leanplum, FitzGerald was president of Americas sales at Marketo, group vice president of North America sales at Oracle Marketing Cloud, and vice president of worldwide sales at Salesforce Service Cloud.

“I’m delighted to assume this new role and continue to help progressive brands build meaningful and lasting relationships,” said FitzGerald. “Right now, we’re developing the future of customer engagement and multichannel marketing, and I couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity to continue to spearhead our growth with the support of our incredible employees.”

Palaniappan joins Just Eat’s board
Just Eat has appointed Jambu Palaniappan as independent non-executive director on its board with immediate effect. He is currently executive-in-residence at Atomico.

Previously, Palaniappan was head of Just Eat rival UberEats’ European business. Before that, he was regional general manager for the Middle East & Africa at Uber, where he oversaw market strategy and operations.

“I am delighted to announce Jambu’s appointment to the board of Just Eat as non-executive director. He brings significant expertise in the online food delivery industry, both in terms of technology and customer service, while his experience in market expansion ensures he will add considerable value to our Board,” said Just Eat chairman Mike Evans.

“I look forward to working closely with Jambu as we continue to successfully deliver on our hybrid marketplace strategy.”

Pegasystems hires Fuentes to lead information security
Carlos Fuentes has been appointed chief information security officer at Pegasystems, a customer engagement and digital process automation software provider. He will oversee the company’s existing information security strategy and implementation, including risk management plans relating to information security, physical security, business continuity planning, crisis management, privacy, and compliance.

Fuentes joins Pega from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, where he served as vice president of security and data for the US payment system, overseeing security of the Federal Reserve’s Fedwire product suite. He also served in IT and security management positions at Verizon, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, AIG, and Fujitsu Consulting.

“I'm excited to join a company with such a successful track record of growth, as well as a focus on client success and cloud choice,” said Fuentes.  “I look forward to enhancing Pega's approach to security for the company and our clients so we can continue to focus on providing industry-leading tools that enable great customer experiences.”

Management gets a reshuffle at Shutterstock
Stock photography company Shutterstock has made Steve Ciardiello its interim chief financial officer following the departure of co-chief operating officer and chief financial officer Steve Burns. This has also seen Stan Pavlovsky, who had been serving as co-chief operating officer and head of strategic operations, named as president and chief operating officer.

Ciardiello will remain as chief financial officer until a successor has been named. He will also continue in his existing role as chief accounting officer.

“I want to thank steven for his significant contributions to the company over the past seven years, first as a member of our board of directors and then as our co-chief operating officer and chief financial officer,” said Jon Oringer, founder, chairman and CEO of Shutterstock. “In these roles, Steven had a meaningful impact on developing and executing our strategic financial and operational priorities. We wish Steven all the best in his future endeavours.”

Pavlovsky’s expanded role will see him oversee Shutterstock’s sales and operations team, in addition to continuing to oversee the company’s product, marketing, and technology teams.

“We are pleased that Stan is taking on this expanded role, which more fully leverages his experience managing the strategic and operational aspects of a technology-focused business,” added Oringer. “I'm confident in Stan's ability to lead our sales and operations teams as they continue to execute our platform and network strategy, and drive the continuous improvement of the customer and contributor experiences.”

Narrative I/O adds two to its board
Ryan Christensen and David Yaffe have joined the board of directors at Narrative I/O, a company which aims to simplify the buying and selling of online data.

Christensen is currently senior vice president of platform product at AppNexus’ Xandr. Before that, he held executive roles at AppNexus, including chief operating officer. He has also had a variety of product management, operations, business development and consulting roles at Zynga, Yahoo and other Silicon Valley technology firms.

“I'm extremely excited to join the board at Narrative,” said Christensen. “Nick [Jordan] and the team have a clear and compelling vision for how enterprises can unlock the value of their data while enhancing the core data protection and privacy practices that consumers and business partners need.”

Yaffe was co-founder of Arbor and former chief operating officer at LiveRamp. Arbor was acquired by LiveRamp in 2016. also serves on the board of Jornaya.

“I'm honoured to be a part of Narrative's board,” said Yaffe. “It's rare to see a company with such a unique and new vision for how companies can extract value from data. Nick and the team have already made an incredible platform which turns that vision into reality.”

Harvard professor joins InMobi board
Mobile marketing and advertising platform provider InMobi has appointed Harvard professor Tarun Khanna as an independent director, becoming the company’s seventh director and second independent one.

Khanna is the Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School, where he has been studying the drivers of entrepreneurship in emerging markets as a means of economic and social development since 1993. Since 2010, he has served as the first director of what is now the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute at Harvard.

Outside of Harvard, he serves on numerous for-profit and not-for-profit boards in the US and India, including AES and Bharat Financial Inclusion Limited. He is a co-founder of several technology-based entrepreneurial ventures in the developing world and, recently, co-founded a Bangalore-based incubator called Axilor.

“InMobi’s journey from being the first unicorn to becoming a successful global company to emerge out of India is an inspiration for any entrepreneur,” said Khanna. “InMobi is pushing the envelope on growth and innovation on multiple fronts. Its Unified Marketing Cloud continues to clock impressive growth in the US, China and Asia; TruFactor, its secure data platform business that enables telcos to transform their digital assets into strategic knowledge is seeing great traction in the US and Asia; and Glance, its AI-powered Screen Zero platform is the fastest growing content platform in India.

“I am very excited to be part of InMobi’s next phase of growth in powering artificial-intelligence driven, mobile-first experiences for enterprises and consumers.”

Connecthings adds two to sales team
James V. Linden has been hired as vice president of sales, while Alison Vacovec has joined as US sales director, at location-based marketing firm Connecthings.

Linden’s role is to promote the Connecthings’ one-stop contextual marketing platform to mobile application developers and publishers as well as digital marketing agencies and analytics solutions. He joins from Gummicube, where he headed up business development for their big data analytics offering. Before that, he lead Kochava’s US business development for several years.

Vacovec will aim to use her mobile experience to help with Connecthings US expansion. She was most recently director of sales, East at Kochava, where she was responsible for SaaS platform adoption of measurement platform and mobile data offering. She picked up that role after handling brand and agency sales at Celtra.