Tuesday , 13 November 2018

Oath hires NFL vet Natalie Ravitz as comms chief as it preps OTT video

On the again of a giant merger and rebranding below proprietor Verizon, and making ready to launch an OTT video technique, the businesses previously often called Aol and Yahoo (which additionally owns TC), and now often called Oath, has been making quite a lot of modifications in its govt bench. In the present day comes the most recent improvement on that entrance. Natalie Ravitz is beginning at present as Oath’s new chief communications officer and “chief storyteller.”

She’s changing Caroline Campbell, who’s leaving the corporate after 9 years with Oath and earlier than that AOL. Campbell was primarily based first in New York after which relocated right down to Washington. Extra just lately, Oath has been on the lookout for a comms individual to work within the function out of NYC, and as Campbell needs to remain within the DC space, it appeared like time for the change, TechCrunch understands.

Ravitz is the most recent employed in a string of govt appointments that Armstrong has made during the last a number of months. Others embody Guru Gowrappan as Oath’s president and COO; Vanessa Wittman as CFO; and Joanna Lambert operating the corporate’s finance and tech verticals.

However one essential factor to notice is that Tim Armstrong, who runs Oath, will not be among the many many individuals transferring round or leaving the corporate, and Campbell’s departure — she’s been carefully linked with Armstrong on the firm — doesn’t suggest that he’ll quickly go, too. We’d heard rumors that he is likely to be tipped to go to WPP, so we requested Armstrong about that straight, and he dismissed the notion. “You’re the second individual to ask me,” he mentioned in an interview, laughing. “I’m being completely direct after I say there may be nothing with me leaving. Zero.”

Ravitz comes from the NFL, the place she was the SVP of communications by means of the latest Tremendous Bowl (that means: she has been tied into quite a lot of the glitz and pleasure, but additionally the more durable job of dealing with the Colin Kaepernick story, an argument that’s nonetheless ongoing). Earlier than that, she’s was a comms chief for different big-but-also-tough organizations, together with 21st Century Fox and Information Corp, the place she was chief of employees and SVP technique to Rupert Murdoch; communications director for NYC public faculties below Mayor Mike Bloomberg; and press secretary and deputy chief of employees for U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer, amongst different roles.

That checklist of expertise matches the invoice at Oath. As we reported earlier this yr, the corporate is engaged on an OTT video strategy that can deliver content material from throughout its current properties, in addition to from premium third-party suppliers, into a brand new set of apps. Armstrong confirmed that the plan goes forward with the primary of its “tremendous channels”, as he known as them, to launch this coming autumn.

“We’re progressing with our plans with tremendous channels in information, sports activities, leisure and finance,” he mentioned, “OTT channels that can be of great scale over the following 12 months.” He mentioned Natalie’s hiring is straight associated to that. “We’re following by means of with this proper now.”

The branding for these has but to be introduced — as have the official plans — however the plan is to make the content material that’s produced at Oath extra seen, and thus monetisable.

Oath is an revolutionary younger firm being constructed round unimaginable platforms and types in media and tech, with the nice benefit of being a part of the Verizon household,” mentioned Natalie Ravitz, incoming Chief Communications Officer at Oath, mentioned in a press release. “I’m excited to assist Oath inform that story in new methods and to new audiences.”

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