D: Dive Into Media brought the media world’s most important and interesting figures together. We had smart, serious and lively conversations with the heads of cable companies, movie studios, print publishers and music labels. We also talked to some of the most interesting digital companies that pose big problems, and opportunities, for the established players.
D: Dive Into Media took place January 30-31, 2012. Here was the line-up of speakers:
Edgar Bronfman, Jr.
Warner Music Group (WMG)
Bronfman has guided WMG's transition from a traditional recorded music and music publishing company to a more diverse music content concern, one that is now a broad-based company with interests in recorded music, music publishing and artist services. Bronfman led a private investment group in its acquisition of WMG from Time Warner for $2.6 billion and, as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman, led the company's initial public offering and its daily operations. He then presided over the sale of WMG to Access Industries for $3.3 billion. When he isn’t overseeing what Fast Company called, in 2009, one of "The World's 50 Most Innovative Companies," Bronfman serves on several health-related and international business boards.
Rio D. Caraeff
President & CEO
Caraeff has long had his fingers in various media pies. Before leading VEVO, he worked for Universal Music’s eLabs, where he handled electronic commerce initiatives, Internet exploitation, and new technology business opportunities worldwide. Before that, he worked in film, TV, games and music for Propaganda Films, various divisions of Sony and Capitol Records. If that name sounds familiar, it’s probably because he has been all over the press in recent years: Fortune magazine’s “40 under 40” (three years running), Fast Company’s “100 Most Creative People in Business,” Evening Standard’s “London’s Most Influential People” and Vanity Fair’s “The Next Establishment.” Both the LA Times and Digital Media Wire named him one of the top digital executives to watch. We’re watching.
Deputy Chairman, President & COO
Carey oversees diversified global operations for News Corporation. His territory spans five continents, and his responsibilities cover the production and distribution of film and television programming; television, satellite and cable broadcasting; newspaper and book publishing; and digital media. He also sits on News Corp.’s Board of Directors. He’s been in the News Corp. family for some time, working at various divisions of Fox and for News Corp.’s worldwide television business and international satellite operations. His stint at DIRECTV – he was president and CEO, and then served on the board – was only a slight aberration.
Returning to the D stage is Dick Costolo, who heads the micro- blogging company that has emerged as a key player on the global stage. Previously, as Twitter’s COO, he oversaw monetization and day-to-day operations. Prior to Twitter, Costolo was co-founder and CEO of FeedBurner, a digital content syndication platform that was acquired by Google in 2007. Before Google, he lived in Chicago, where he founded and ran two digital media companies: SpyOnIt, a Web page monitoring service, and Burning Door Networked Media, a Web design and development consulting company. He was also an improv performer with the acclaimed Annoyance Theater.
President and CEO
Viacom is home to several well-known channels -- Comedy Central, Nickelodeon, MTV, etc. – owns Paramount Pictures, and operates multiple properties for entertainment, community and casual online gaming. Prior to running Viacom, Dauman was CEO of a private equity firm specializing in media and telecommunications investments, and before that he held several positions at Viacom. His board memberships are wide ranging, including education in under-served communities; arts and entertainment; healthcare; and the law. He received his BA from Yale and his law degree from Columbia.
President & COO
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.
Gersh is responsible for all aspects of MSLO's day-to-day operations; she oversees all the company's businesses, which include publishing, broadcasting and merchandising lifestyle content and products. Before joining MSLO, Gersh co-founded Oxygen Media and served as its President and COO. She then sold Oxygen to NBC Universal, where she was instrumental in the multi-billion dollar acquisition of The Weather Channel Companies. With that under her belt, Gersh served as President of Strategic Initiatives at NBC. Prior to all this media mishegas, Gersh co-founded law firm Friedman Kaplan & Seiler, where she served as a partner. During her tenure, the firm grew from 6 lawyers to over 40, serving a wide range of corporate clients in complex corporate transactions and commercial litigation. And clearly, that’s a Good Thing.
Senior Vice President
YouTube & Video
Salar Kamangar drafted Google's first business plan, started its early legal and finance functions, and helped found its product team before taking over at YouTube two years after its Google acquisition. Prior to that, he led product management for Google's advertising and monetization products, including the AdWords program, which he and a small engineering team designed, launched, and helped grow to become a multi-billion dollar business. Kamangar also led product management teams for Google's web applications, including Gmail, Calendar, Docs, Spreadsheets, Presentations, Voice, and Checkout.
Under Kilar's leadership, Hulu – in case you haven’t heard of it, it’s an online TV service that has changed how we view television – has grown to become a leading provider of premium online video with more than 260 professional content providers, 30 million unique monthly users and $260 million in annual revenue. He joined Hulu after nearly a decade at Amazon.com, where he wrote the original business plan for Amazon's entry into the video and DVD businesses and then became VP and general manager of Amazon's North American media businesses, which included the company's books, music, video and DVD categories. Fresh out of Harvard Business School, he worked for Disney Design & Development.
Clear Channel Media Holdings
What do you do after being inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame? Well, there are still jobs to be done. For Pittman, that means leading a global media, digital and entertainment company which includes Clear Channel Radio, which reaches 240 million listeners every month, and Clear Channel Outdoor, with close to one million displays in over 40 countries. Pittman is the co-founder and programmer who led the team that created MTV and has been CEO of MTV Networks, AOL Networks, Six Flags Theme Parks, Quantum Media, Century 21 Real Estate, and Time Warner Enterprises. He was also COO of America Online, Inc. and later of AOL Time Warner. Whew. That’s a far cry from his formative years as a radio announcer in his home state of Mississippi.
The New Yorker
Who says print is dead? David Remnick began his reporting career at The Washington Post before becoming a staff writer at The New Yorker and later editor. He has written over 100 long, measured, thoughtful pieces for the magazine, and he has also authored several books. Since his tenure at The New Yorker, the magazine has won 30 National Magazine Awards; Remnick himself has, in the course of his career, received both the Pulitzer Prize for nonfiction and a George Polk Award for excellence in journalism. He has contributed to The New York Review of Books, Vanity Fair, Esquire, and The New Republic; has been a Visiting Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations; and has taught at Columbia and Princeton Universities.
Co-Chairman, Disney Media Networks
Team player John Skipper has coached ESPN through its explosive drive in television, digital, print and advertising sales initiatives. Even as a rookie, he kept his eye on the ball – in this case, the emerging digital landscape – and hit home runs with ESPN magazine, ESPN.com and the early adoption of broadband access. He brought the company’s “best available screen” philosophy to life across more platforms and with more wide-ranging major rights agreements than ever before, and his focus on live sports has made him an MVP with fans. And to torture just one more sports metaphor, in a game where it’s win or lose, Skipper finds the corporate win-win. Gooooal!
Founder & Director
Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.
Millions of consumers rely on Martha Stewart as their arbiter of style and taste and their guide to all aspects of everyday living – from cooking and entertaining to decorating and gardening. One savvy businesswoman, Stewart created an expansive multimedia portfolio that encompasses magazines, the marthastewart.com website, an Emmy Award-winning television show, a line of home-improvement products at The Home Depot, home products exclusively at Macy’s, pet products at PetSmart, Martha Stewart Crafts, and more. Next year, she plans to launch Martha Stewart stores within J. C. Penney department stores, as well as a Martha Stewart e-commerce site. Coming soon: Martha Stewart to launch own space program. It could happen.
Chairman and CEO
The string of testosterone-fueled hits Tull has ushered into being in conjunction with Warner Bros. is impressive enough – The Hangover (1 and 2), 300, Inception, The Dark Knight, just for example – but then there’s also his creative side. He conceived of and produced the music documentary It Might Get Loud, which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival and was released by Sony Pictures Classics. He founded Legendary in order to combine his entrepreneurial acumen, deep understanding of film finance and true passion for movies, comic books, video games and fantasy fare, and fandom will be forever grateful. When he isn’t deep in the movie biz, Tull is a minority partner in the Pittsburgh Steelers football franchise.
Singer, Songwriter, Advocate
Neil Young's career stretches over more than four decades, and in that time he's created some of rock and folk's most memorable music. He has ventured outside of conventional music-making, too: He's directed a number of films, cofounded the Farm Aid benefit concerts, and invested time, money and energy into the Lincvolt, a 1959 Lincoln Continental equipped with a hybrid engine. He is also a committed proponent of hi-def audio, a cause that has yet to find many backers in the MP3 age.