Baton passes at IDG Communications
By Marie Griffin
In early August, IDG Communications named a new U.S. CEO, Michael Friedenberg, and worldwide president, David Hill, to succeed Bob Carrigan, who will leave his job as CEO of IDG Communications worldwide at the end of this month after five years in the position. Carrigan will join IDG's board and continue as a member of the CEO Advisory Board at IDG Ventures USA.
Friedenberg joined IDG in July 2005 as president-CEO of its CXO Media subsidiary, which evolved into the IDG Enterprise unit that comprises all the company's b-to-b-focused media and event brands, including CIO, the CIO Executive Council, Computerworld, DEMO, InfoWorld, ITWorld and Network World. He was named president-CEO of IDG Enterprise upon its formation in early 2009. Prior to joining IDG, he was VP-publisher of the InformationWeek Media Network, part of the former CMP division of UBM.
“I see myself continuing to build out the strategy that Bob [Carrigan] set forth, which I call "quality at scale,' ” Friedenberg said. “We are leveraging our premium owned-and-operated brands and coupling that with the data-driven strategy being led by our TechNetwork. What I mean by "data driven' is our ability to use first- and third-party data to create audiences to which marketers want to be aligned.”
In his new position, Friedenberg adds to his IDG Enterprise responsibilities oversight of IDG's Consumer & SMB division, which includes the Macworld, PCWorld and TechHive brands; the IDG TechNetwork (in the U.S.), a digital ad network of independent IT websites and blogs; and IDG World Expo, producer of such technology-focused trade shows, conferences and events as the Electronic Entertainment Expo, Enterprise MobileNext, Game Marketing Summit and Macworld/iWorld.
The various units have already been sharing best practices across divisional lines, and Friedenberg said he expects even more of this under his oversight. For example, the Enterprise group could benefit from learning what PCWorld is doing to generate reader revenue from digital editions, while the Consumer & SMB group could learn more about demand generation from Enterprise, he said.
Friedenberg noted that IDG is continuing its practice of promoting from within with his elevation and that of Hill, who joined IDG in 1986. Prior to assuming his role as worldwide president of IDG Communications, Hill was president-CEO of IDG International Publishing Services, where he was responsible for international business development and global editorial operations. He now picks up IDG's corporate services, global sales and international media operations in 97 countries.
Reed Phillips, co-founder and managing partner of media investment bank DeSilva+Phillips, said the new structure should be more manageable than having one executive overseeing both U.S. and global operations.
“I'm not surprised Bob Carrigan is looking to step back,” Phillips said. “Being the CEO of IDG Communications worldwide is an incredibly demanding job, with a lot of international travel.”