Newsweek Daily Beast appoints advertising firm Hill Holliday Chief Strategy and Chief Media Officer Baba Shetty as CEO
September 19, 2012
– The Newsweek Daily Beast Company LLC today announced the appointment of Baba Shetty as Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Shetty currently serves as Chief Strategy and Chief Media Officer at Boston-based advertising firm Hill Holliday where he leads brand planning, consumer research, content and media planning. Under his leadership, Hill Holliday was named 2011 Media Agency of the Year by Media magazine and for four consecutive years has won Adweek's Media Plan of the Year Award - the only agency to do so. Prior to Hill Holliday, Mr. Shetty led digital at Fallon Worldwide, and spent three years as a principal analyst at Forrester Research in Cambridge, MA. Mr. Shetty's appointment comes as The Daily Beast, 2012 Webby award winner for Best News Site, saw a year on year increase in traffic of 69%*.
Said Baba Shetty, "I'm thrilled to join the team at Newsweek & The Daily Beast at this important time. Clay Shirky says 'it's not information overload, it's filter failure' and The Daily Beast philosophy of 'read this, skip that' brilliantly solves filter failure - there's a reason the site is growing faster than any other in the category. Women in the World and the upcoming Hero Project are stellar events that speak to the convening power of the company. The potential of those assets combined with the globally strong Newsweek brand fascinates me. IAC is a company with deep strengths in managing thriving digital businesses and I'm very much looking forward to working with Tina and Barry to develop the next stage of this company."
Said Tina Brown, "Baba is a real catalyst in bringing ideas to the marketplace. We collaborated on our very successful Newsweek Mad Men issue together and forged a terrific creative relationship. He is extremely gifted at brand and digital strategy, is a strong leader, and is the perfect partner for the next phase of The Newsweek Daily Beast Company and our expanding live events business."
Mr. Shetty assumes the role of CEO from Stephen Colvin. Colvin, a long-time media executive who has been a key force in building The Daily Beast from a start-up when he joined in 2009 to the hit it is today, will depart in October. "Steve and I have had a great 3 years together. He leaves the company in a great place and poised for a very exciting future," added Brown.
Said Stephen Colvin, "I feel an enormous sense of pride in what we have achieved - growing The Daily Beast into the award-winning, digital powerhouse it is today and steering the merger of Newsweek & The Daily Beast to create a vibrant and innovative media company. I wish Tina, Baba and everyone else at NewsBeast the very best in taking the business to new heights. For me it is an exciting new chapter in my career as I join Eric Hippeau and Kenny and Ben Lerer at Lerer Ventures as Executive in Residence."
ABOUT; The Daily Beast was founded in 2008 as the vision of Tina Brown and IAC Chairman Barry Diller. Curated to avoid information overload, the site is dedicated to breaking news and sharp commentary. In 2011, The Daily Beast became the online home of Newsweek magazine, which has served as the world's preeminent conversation starter since its founding in 1933. Tina Brown, former editor of Vanity Fair, The New Yorker and Talk, serves as Editor-in-Chief of both publications.
*Traffic Source: Omniture