June 5, 2018
M. Scott Havens, Global Head of Digital, sent the following memo to Bloomberg Media employees:
In the almost six months since TicToc by Bloomberg launched, we’ve achieved significant milestones and continue to break new ground as we seek to define the next generation digital news network. The team, which has expanded across critical regions around the world, has produced more than 400 live event broadcasts, recorded more than 160 million total views since launch, and hit 250,000 followers last week. Along the way, the team is also receiving industry recognition, having just won The Drum’s Grand Prix and Editorial Innovation of the Year as well as two Shorty Awards.
The business of TicToc is growing tremendously as well, quickly emerging as one of the most important platforms in our digital suite. In addition to the incredibly strong launch sponsor support with seven founding partners, we’re signing on new brands and introducing industry-leading advertising innovations like sponsored live events, which have delivered post-launch revenue in the seven figures. We see great potential in establishing and expanding the TicToc brand, having just introduced the TicToc podcast and newsletter. TicToc was a strong digital growth contributor in the first quarter as Bloomberg Media Group’s overall digital ad revenues rose 12% in the quarter year-over-year.
As we embark on the next phase of growth for TicToc, I’m excited to share with you today some important new additions to the team, starting with Jean Ellen Cowgill who has officially joined us this week as General Manager of TicToc. In this newly created role, Jean Ellen will partner closely with Mindy Massucci to oversee the growth and development of TicToc, and also drive Bloomberg Media Group’s digital strategy by establishing and expanding partnerships and defining innovative strategic initiatives. Jean Ellen joins us from The Atlantic, where she served as the president of Atlantic 57, the publisher’s consulting and creative division. Jean Ellen built Atlantic 57 over its first six years, and under her leadership, grew the business as the fastest growing division at The Atlantic in terms of percentage revenue growth year over year. Prior to that role, Jean Ellen worked closely with Justin Smith leading Atlantic Media’s corporate strategy efforts, crafting business models for new ventures and charting the company’s growth plans. Earlier in her career, Jean Ellen was a consultant at McKinsey & Company. Both Justin and I have worked closely with Jean Ellen in our previous careers and can attest that she’s a rare talent, and as importantly, a great person and colleague.
We’ve also brought on three additional talents to join the TicToc team:
- Adam Levy has come on board as product lead for TicToc, where he will be responsible for accelerating the network’s product vision and strategy. Most recently at The Washington Post, Adam led the development of innovative new features on the company’s iOS apps and flagship website.
- Sharmila Natarajan recently started as TicToc’s lead for partnerships and operations and will be working closely with Jean Ellen to identify new strategic opportunities. Sharmila joins us from the Hollywood studio world where she spent the last seven years in Los Angeles in both strategy and digital marketing roles. While at 20th Century Fox, she drove engagement and sales for tent pole theatrical and home entertainment titles and at NBC Universal, she focused on building the network’s TV show brands across digital platforms.
- Dylan Greif is our new lead designer for BHIVE and will help define the next generation product experience for TicToc. Joining us from The Guardian’s Innovation Lab, Dylan is a wildly talented creative force. He was the design lead at Casper, the head of design at Atavist, a product designer at Etsy, a graphic designer at Local Project and a book designer at St. Martin’s Press. In addition, Dylan currently teaches editorial design courses at The Rhode Island School of Design and The New School.
All four of these appointments will help us push TicToc to the next level and we’re thrilled to have them on board. Please join me and Mindy in welcoming Jean Ellen, Sharmilla, Adam and Dylan to Bloomberg Media Group!