Movers and Shakers: The Ozone Project, Tapjoy, Mubaloo, eyeo and more

The mobile marketing industry is ever-changing, and that applies to the people as much as the technology. Movers & Shakers is our regular feature following the hottest hires in the industry, so you can keep track of who’s joined which company, and what they’re doing there.

(Clockwise from top left) Danny Spears, Jeff Drobick, Gemma Coles, Jutta Horstmann, Holly Martin, Moris Chemtov, Alex Mandel, Jonathan Kriege

Spears takes up commercial director role at The Ozone Project
Programmatic ad platform The Ozone Project has appointed Danny Spears as its commercial director. In the role, Spears will be responsible for managing relationships with customers of Ozone’s Publisher Platform helping them to achieve incremental growth in their digital advertising businesses.

News UK, Guardian News & Media, The Telegraph and Reach plc are the founding partners of the platform. Spears’ role will see him working closely with existing and new partners to identify their challenges and provide relevant solutions. His responsibilities will also include attracting new publishers and managing the commercial, product and analytics aspects of the platform.

With almost 15 years’ experience in the media industry, Spears joins The Ozone Project from Guardian News & Media, where he was programmatic director, responsible for global leadership of advertising technology and data strategy as well as direct ownership of programmatic in the UK and rest of world. Prior to this he held the role of Head of Guardian+, The Guardian’s buy-side function, where he was responsible for growing Guardian+ to represent 25 per cent of the Guardian’s total digital ad revenue. Spears will reporting to The Ozone Project CEO, Damon Reeve.

Spears said: “I’m excited by the opportunity that Ozone presents for me to represent a wider and diverse group of publisher interests – and by the role Ozone will play in catalysing market-level change. It is a natural evolution of my work, and interest, over the past five years and keeps me close to the businesses of journalism and content-creation.”

Drobick to CEO, Wadsworth to chairman at Tapjoy
Tapjoy has appointed Jeff Drobick as its president and CEO, effective immediately. Drobick takes over the reins from Steve Wadsworth, who transitions from his role as CEO to chairman of Tapjoy’s board of directors.
Drobick has served as Tapjoy’s chief product officer since 2013, driving the company’s overall product vision and strategy while overseeing its product management, design, engineering, dev ops and data science teams. Prior to Tapjoy, Drobick served as CEO of Geeknet Media and also spent almost 12 years heading up tech teams at eBay. Prior to eBay, he spent almost eight years in Accenture’s global technology practice.

As Tapjoy’s CPO, Drobick worked closely with Wadsworth establish the company as a leader in mobile opt-in, value exchange advertising and claim significant market share in the areas of app monetization, rewarded video, rich media and programmatic advertising.

Wadsworth has served as CEO of Tapjoy since 2012. He was previously president of Disney Interactive Media Group and SVP and CFO of Walt Disney Internet Group. Wadsworth oversaw the company’s successful acquisitions of 5ROCKS, a mobile marketing automation and analytics company, and Tapdaq, an advertising mediation and app monetization platform. During his tenure, Tapjoy was named one of the “World’s Most Innovative” companies by Fast Company, and the company has experienced accelerating revenue growth and more than two years of expanding profitability.

He said: “I am very proud of what the team has accomplished over the years as we established ourselves as a leader in mobile advertising and app monetization. The ecosystem is maturing rapidly, and with Tapjoy poised to release a number of new innovations, now is the right time for Jeff to take over. He is a great leader with exceptional vision, and he was the obvious choice to serve as our next CEO. I have the fullest confidence in him and the team to continue driving the industry forward and creating value for all of our customers, partners and stakeholders.”

Wadsworth will take over as chairman from Warren Jenson, who was elected as Tapjoy’s non-executive chairman in 2013.

Tapjoy has also announced the promotions and expanded responsibilities of several other executives, including Shannon Jessup to global chief revenue officer; Benjamin Chen to SVP & GM, global developer relations; Sarah Chafer to SVP, global performance; Emily McInerney to global VP of marketing; Surendra Pathak to SVP of platform engineering; and Moonsik Kang to SVP of engineering.

Coles takes top job at Mubaloo
Gemma Coles has been promoted to the role of head of Mubaloo. Her promotion follows a year of significant growth for the agency, including a Cannes Lion award for the UK’s first voice-enabled interactive ad unit for Amazon Alexa.

In her new role, Coles will be tasked with fulfilling an ambitious three-year plan for Mubaloo, which includes further expanding the agency’s proposition and continuing to lead on commercial growth.

Based in London and Bristol, Mubaloo has a team of strategy, UX and technical consultants, with experience across mobile, web, voice, AR, AI and location technologies. A focus on frictionless customer experience and digital transformation has delivered success for clients including RBS, MTRCrossrail, TFL, Hanson, ABRSM and the London Air Ambulance.

“This is a truly amazing opportunity for me and Im so excited about delivering for the agency,” said Coles. “I feel we have such a brilliant business to grow upon and 2018 was a fantastic year of opportunity and learning. Being part of the IPG family has given us the ability to explore where we can go next. I’m really looking forward to continue working with the Mubaloo and wider Reprise teams to deliver the very best for our clients.”

Coles joined Mubaloo in 2010, working initially with founder and CEO, Mark Mason to establish a strategy team, with her responsibilities growing following IPG Mediabrands’ acquisition of Mubaloo in 2016.
Last year saw the relaunch of IPG Mediabrands’ agency Reprise in response to the growing market need for a full suite of digital media services to be housed under one roof. Mubaloo is a part of the Reprise network.

Horstmann takes the reins at eyeo
eyeo, the company behind Adblock Plus, has appointed Jutta Horstmann, previously its head of filters, as its chief operating officer, with immediate effect. Horstmann, who has been with the company for a year, is taking over the responsibility for the operations side of eyeo.

Before joining eyeo, Horstmann worked for several years as an IT consultant for digital and agile transformation in international software projects. After graduating with a computer science diploma in 2006, she founded her own software company, Data in Transit, in 2006, which successfully developed open source web applications for the public sector for more than 10 years.

CEO and founder Till Faida said: “Through her proactive commitment, her experience and her knowledge, Jutta Horstmann has had an significant impact on eyeos success in the last 12 months. With her in the management team, we are well prepared for our next steps to build a more sustainable open web. We are delighted to have her in this position.”

Kriegel to CEO at DOCOMO Digital
Jonathan Kriegel has been appointed as DOCOMO Digital’s CEO, stepping up from his current role as chief transformation officer with effect from 1 April, to replace Hiroyuki Sato. Kriegel joined DOCOMO Digital in July 2018 and has been working with Sato to drive transformation of the firm as a platform of choice in payments and digital marketing solutions for brands, merchants and telecom carriers.

Prior to working with DOCOMO Digital, Kriegel served as CEO of another NTT DOCOMO group entity, DOCOMO Pacific, based in Guam. With over three decades of cross-functional leadership experience in the telecom industry with global companies such as Vodafone group, he brings deep expertise especially in shaping strategy, developing new markets and cross-border M&A.

Sato, an NTT DOCOMO group veteran who has led DOCOMO Digital since inception, will return to NTT DOCOMO to assume responsibility for developing new business. Under his leadership, DOCOMO Digital has grown to become a preeminent mobile commerce platform, enabling billions of dollars’ worth of transactions while unlocking latent value and enhancing experiences for telecom companies, merchants and their consumers around the world.

“With the proliferation of connected devices and the advent of 5G, mobile commerce will continue to grow exponentially, and this presents tremendous opportunities for DOCOMO Digital as emerging markets catch-up quickly with more mature ones,” said Kriegel. “ I am deeply honoured and excited to be entrusted with the responsibility for leading DOCOMO Digital as the payments and digital marketing spaces enter this period of accelerating growth.”

Fluent hires Mandel as its CFO
Performance marketing firm Fluent has hired Alex Mandel as its chief financial officer. Mandel will work with senior company executives, focusing on strategic finance initiatives, corporate strategy and general financial management, reporting to Fluent’s CEO, Ryan Schulke.

Mandel has worked with Fluent as a financial consultant since July 2018. He brings over 22 years of corporate finance experience to the role. Prior to his consultancy, he served as CFO of IAC Applications, and as CFO of LendingTree, an online loan marketplace, during which time his leadership on financial initiatives and corporate strategy was credited with playing an essential role in the resurgence of the company. He started his career as an investment banker, advising clients in the media and entertainment industry, primarily at Bear, Stearns & Co.

“Over the past seven months, Alex has helped to fortify our finance, accounting and overall public company infrastructure, as Fluent has continued to establish itself as a stand-alone public company,” said Schulke. “In addition, he has begun to play a meaningful role in helping to shape our corporate strategy as we scale and unlock new growth opportunities. Im thrilled to have him join the leadership team as chief financial officer.”

Chemtov appointed global CEO at Digital Goodie
Digital Goodie, a global eCommerce company whose platform is used by major retailers, has appointed Moris Chemtov as its global CEO. He will work out of the company’s Helsinki office and will partner with deputy managing director Jani Jääskeläinen to navigate the next phase of the company’s growth and expansion. The appointment is part of the companys expansion plan to new geographies, new acquisitions and build a market leading company for the long term.

Chemtov has over 30 years’ experience in the retail industry, and a proven track record in delivering outstanding service to a varied client base. Most recently, he was president of JESTA IS., a leading software vendor for the retail industry. Prior to that, he served in a leadership capacity at Deloitte Consulting as a director. Prior to joining Deloitte, he was the founder and President of TIE Consulting, a firm specializing in retail management consulting.

He said: “I’m honoured to lead such a creative and innovative company. I’m humbled by the faith and trust the clients have put into an outstanding team and fantastic product suite. Our focus will be on high quality products, outstanding delivery and service and sustained growth.”

MuteSix hires four
Digital agency MuteSix has announced four new hires to its leadership team. Marc Loreti and Holly Martin have joined the company as VPs of business development, while Bree Blackman joins as VP of creative strategy, and Ross Bucholc as VP of paid search.

MuteSix has clients across the retail, eCommerce, luxury, non-profit, technology, sports, publishing, and financial services sectors. The agency has been achieving 265 per cent year-on-year growth and has also seen its creative studio (StudioSix) grow 12x in 2018.

The company is currently investing further into mobile-first video ads. “Mobile video is going to be the most popular and fastest growing content format this year given spending is expected to hit $103bn by 2023,” said COO Daniel Rutberg. “The increasing popularity of mobile video-sharing platforms like Facebook and Instagram presents an immense opportunity to create, serve and measure interactive video ads.

The agency is also developing its proprietary predictive technology. “Clients don’t just want data, they want insights that make an economic impact,” said Rutberg. “We’re looking to predictive technology to help refine hyper-relevant creative advertising to accelerate results for brands moving towards a cross-platform future.”