CTAM Live: Lins Exits Spotlight, Boards Canoe


Canoe Ventures will now have Vicki Lins’ undivided attention, as she joins the operator-backed advertising startup full-time as chief marketing officer and relinquishes her duties at Comcast Spotlight.

Lins, previously senior vice president of marketing and communications for Comcast’s ad-sales arm, will oversee all marketing and communications functions for Canoe.

She spent about a year splitting her time between Comcast Spotlight and helping the six-MSO Canoe Ventures get off the ground. “I’ve been doing double duty,” she said in an interview.

Canoe is headed by CEO David Verklin, formerly head of advertising agency Aegis Media Americas. Chief technology officer Arthur Orduna joined the venture in August from Advance/Newhouse Communications.

At the CTAM Summit ’08 next week in Boston, Lins is scheduled to present what is billed as an “insider’s briefing” about the venture Monday, Nov. 10, at 1 p.m. Verklin is scheduled to appear on a CEO panel discussion in the general session Nov. 11 from 12:15 to 2:30 p.m.

Canoe’s mission is to act as a service bureau for advertisers to place and track targeted and interactive TV spots across multiple MSOs and cable networks. The company is owned by Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications, Charter Communications, Cablevision Systems and Bright House Networks.

“Obviously Canoe has a big marketing challenge,” Lins said. “Canoe is a collaboration of the top MSOs. We have a cable legacy, but we also want to be the new face of advanced advertising.”

Prior to joining Comcast in June 2002, Lins was senior vice president of marketing and communications for Adlink, the Los Angeles cable interconnect system.

Comcast Spotlight has not named a replacement for Lins. The unit last month announced a restructuring that included an unspecified number of layoffs.

Lins said Canoe’s focus for the next four months or so will be ramping up operations. The New York-based company currently has fewer than a dozen employees. “It’s a startup,” she said. “We’re just starting to staff up.”

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