thePlatform Appoints Co-CEOs

CEO/Co-Founder Ian Blaine To Step Down, Become Strategic Advisor
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thePlatform, the online video publishing unit of Comcast, came forth with a significant executive shift on Thursday, appointing co-CEOs and announcing that Ian Blaine, thePlatform's co-founder and current CEO, will step down and transition to the role of strategic advisor, effective June 20.

Under the new structure, two existing thePlatform execs – Marty Roberts and Jamie Miller – will step in as co-CEOs and jointly manage the company’s overall corporate strategy and execution.

Roberts, who joined thePlatform in 2006 and most recently served as SVP of worldwide sales and marketing, will also lead the company’s engineering and technology activities as part of his expanded role. Alan Ramaley, CTO, and Mike Horwitz, SVP, engineering, will both report to Roberts.

Miller, who joined thePlatform in 2010 and has been serving as COO and CFO, will also oversee the company’s expansion into Europe and the Middle East. Simon McGrath, general manager, Europe, will report to Miller.

“Marty and Jamie are exceptional leaders, with the proven background, vision and passion to guide thePlatform into the future,” said Sam Schwartz, chief business development officer of Comcast Cable, in a statement. “Over the years, thePlatform has played an important role in the growth of multiscreen video for both Comcast and the broader industry, and I am confident that will continue under the leadership of Marty and Jamie. I’d like to thank Ian Blaine for his leadership and wisdom during the last decade of thePlatform’s growth.  We look forward to continuing to work with him as a strategic advisor.”

Blaine founded Seattle-based thePlatform in 2000. Comcast acquired the company in 2006 for what’s believed to be about $100 million.

In a blog post explaining his decision, Blaine said he is leaving on a “high note,” adding that thePlatform just had its “strongest quarter ever,” citing the company’s work on the Super Bowl and the Sochi Olympics.

“After working to build this company for the past fourteen years, I have decided that the time has come for me to answer the call that has been growing more insistent recently. The call is to explore new things, chase new ideas, and chart new adventures, and that’s what I plan to do,” Blaine wrote. “I will remain a strategic advisor to thePlatform. The company is near and dear to my heart, and I want to make sure that it enjoys a smooth transition and continued success.”

Of recent note, thePlatform and Adobe struck a co-selling deal for multiscreen video and authenticated TV Everywhere services that includes the integration of thePlatform’s mpx video management system with Adobe Primetime, a modular mix of its video player software development kit (SDK), data analytics, and ad-insertion services.

thePlatform’s customer roster includes A+E Networks, E!, the Golf Channel, BT, Cablevision Systems, Comcast, Cox Communications, Liberty Global, Style, Syfy, Travel Channel Media, truTV, USA Network, Viaplay, Rogers Communications, Shaw Media, and Time Warner Cable, among others.

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