The movement to create a “Hulu for magazines” hasn’t gotten much traction lately, but it has gotten a new CEO: Morgan Guenther, who is best known as the president of TiVo from 2001-2003.
Guenther will take the reigns of Next Issue Media, a joint venture of Condé Nast, Hearst, Meredith, News Corporation and Time Inc. to create a digital hub where consumers can access magazine articles the way they access TV clips on Hulu.
“Next Issue Media is well positioned to create and deliver incremental business opportunities to the magazine and newspaper publishing world,” said Guenther in a written statement. “The potential for value creation across the entire industry ecosystem… is massive. Our task now is to execute on that potential.”
The project, originally announced in December of 2009, has taken on an air of urgency since the successful launch of the iPad. One of Next Issue’s primary goals is to make magazines as accessible to e-readers like the iPad and Kindle as books and some newspapers are now. With more than 2 million iPads sold since launch of the device in April, the stakes are considerably higher for anyone looking to create a successful magazine app.
Robert Sauerberg Jr., group president of Condé Nast consumer marketing and Next Issue Media’s chairman of the board, said that Guenther’s experience shepherding TV into the DVR age would help him transform magazines for e-readers.
“At TiVo, Morgan helped change the way people watch television,” Sauerberg said in a written statement. “With Next Issue Media, he will help us stimulate digital innovations that redefine, personalize and enhance the experience of reading magazines, newspapers and other types of content.”
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