Musk nabbed former NBCUniversal CEO Yaccarino as Twitter’s new CEO

(Reuters) – Elon Musk has named former NBCUniversal promoting director Linda Yaccarino as Twitter’s new CEO, as the corporate tries to reverse a decline in advert income.

Yaccarino will tackle a difficult social media platform and a heavy debt burden, after spending a number of years modernizing the promoting enterprise at NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O).

“I’m excited to welcome Belinda Iaccarino as the brand new CEO of Twitter!” Musk stated in a tweet on Friday. @LindaYacc I’ll focus totally on enterprise operations, whereas specializing in product design and new expertise.

Since Musk acquired Twitter in October, advertisers have fled the social media platform, anxious that their adverts would possibly seem alongside inappropriate content material after the corporate misplaced almost 80% of its workers. Musk acknowledged earlier this 12 months that Twitter had suffered an enormous drop in advert income.

Lou Pascalis, an promoting trade government and CEO of AJL Consulting, a advertising and marketing consulting agency, stated that “the trajectory of Twitter will instantly take a 180-degree flip” underneath her management.

“I believe she (Yaccarino) climbed each mountain she may in NBCU and did it very properly. And there’s no better problem than restoring order on Twitter,” he stated.

Whereas Musk stated Yaccarino would assist construct an “every part app,” which he beforehand stated may supply quite a lot of providers resembling peer-to-peer funds, his number of an advert skilled indicated that digital adverts will proceed to be a major focus of the enterprise. .

Musk fired 1000’s of Twitter workers, rushed the launch of a subscription product that allowed scammers to impersonate huge manufacturers and suspended customers he disagreed with, all of which scared manufacturers out of spending on the platform.

In an effort to diversify away from promoting, the billionaire has centered on Twitter Blue, a subscription function that prices customers $8 per thirty days to confirm their accounts, however the product has had restricted success.

Unbiased researcher Travis Browne, who tracks the variety of blue Twitter subscribers over time, estimated There have been 619,858 clients as of April thirtieth.

Iaccarino couldn’t be reached for remark.


Her exit is one other huge blow for NBCUniversal. Final month, NBC mother or father Comcast stated NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell was leaving after admitting to an inappropriate relationship with a girl on the firm, following a grievance that prompted an investigation.

Chief promoting officer Mark Marshall will take over as interim president of NBCUniversal’s Promoting and Partnerships group. Marshall was named President of Promoting Gross sales and Partnerships in 2018, overseeing NBC’s broadcast tv, sports activities, and superior promoting gross sales.

Yaccarino’s exit comes at a tough time for NBCUniversal, which is making ready for its annual present for advertisers Monday at Radio Metropolis Music Corridor.

Yaccarino joined NBCU in 2011, after 15 years at Turner Leisure, and has been credited with shifting the community’s promoting gross sales operation into the digital age.

As broadcast TV audiences transition to broadcast, I took to the stage at Radio Metropolis Music Corridor final 12 months to inform advertisers that their model messaging wasn’t an afterthought. She stated NBCUniversal had included adverts in Peacock’s streaming service from the beginning.

“Twitter wants to realize credibility with the promoting group,” stated Greg Kahn, CEO of media consultancy GK Digital Ventures. “Linda has demonstrated her confidence and progressive nature in bringing new companions to the desk and a deep platform of relationships.”

Musk, CEO of electrical automotive maker Tesla Inc (TSLA.O), accomplished the Twitter buy in October for $44 billion. He stated on Friday that hiring Yaccarino would permit him to spend extra time working Tesla.

On Thursday, Musk wrote on Twitter that he had discovered a CEO, with out naming Iaccarino. An individual near Yaccarino stated Musk’s tweet could have accelerated the timeline for her to affix Twitter, which might be a balm for Tesla shareholders.

Tesla shares closed down 2.4% at $167.98 on Friday, whereas Comcast shares fell 0.4% to $40.21.

Extra reporting by Tyachi Datta in Bengaluru; Modifying by Anil D’Silva

Our requirements: Thomson Reuters Belief Ideas.