Execs & Accounts for May 28, 2003

Search company LookSmart is looking for a new chief financial officer, as Dianne Dubois is leaving the firm due to family issues and a desire to pursue other interests, the company said.

Executive recruiting firm Spencer Stuart will look for candidates while Dubois stays on during a three-month transition.

Jason Kellerman, LookSmart’s chief executive officer, said, “I want to thank Dianne for her contributions to the growth and success of LookSmart over the two years she has been with us, and we wish her good luck in her future endeavors.”

LookSmart recently reported first quarter 2003 revenue of $33.4 million, a 67 percent increase from the first quarter 2002, but also had to revise full-year earnings estimates downward, citing a need to invest in product development.

Rich media ad platform company Eyeblaster has opened an office in Hamburg, Germany, building on its existing European presence in London.

The new office, which will be managed by Marco Versace, director of Eyeblaster Germany, is aimed at better serving advertisers, agencies, and publishers in central Europe.

“Eyeblaster has recorded major growth in every aspect of our commercial activity in Europe over the last year,” says Yoav Arnstein, Director of Eyeblaster Europe. “The Eyeblaster Rich Media Platform is the most popular solution in the European market today for creating and managing rich media campaigns.”

Eyeblaster has run more than 300 campaigns for major advertisers in Europe, including brands such as Visa, Nokia, Sony-Ericsson, HP, Canon, British Airways, IBM.

News Corporation’s Twentieth Television has signed on to use Lightningcast’s MediaThunder online ad insertion technology to promote its Los Angeles-based weekday talk show, “Good Day Live.” The company used its existing TV creative in an effort to reinforce its message online with streaming audio and video.

The companies didn’t divulge the media strategy behind the campaign.

Virtual mobile operator Virgin Mobile USA, a wireless service targeted to the youth market, has appointed three executives to its marketing team.

Greg Castronuovo, formerly vice president of marketing for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), joins as vice president of promotion and brand activation. Susan Collins, formerly SVP of marketing and advertising at DirecTV, takes on the role of vice president of consumer marketing. Bob Stohrer, previously vice president and creative director at the National Football League, will become vice president of brand and communications.

“Virgin Mobile USA has a simple goal — to provide an outstanding wireless experience to its consumers. To achieve this, we have assembled a marketing and brand team that has both a clear vision of consumer marketing, and an obsession with providing an amazing brand experience for consumers,” said Howard Handler, chief marketing officer of Virgin Mobile USA. “Greg, Susan and Bob each bring a wealth of expertise to an already strong team, and we’re pleased to welcome them to Virgin Mobile USA.”

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