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David Levin, CEO, United Business Media

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What: CEO
Where: United Business Media
Top achievements of 2008: In the U.S. in January and the U.K. in July, Levin eliminated the organizational structures of CMP Technology and CMP Information, respectively. Levin said the moves were not about retrenchment, but "about creating agile, focused businesses that are closer to their audiences and customers and able to build the products and services the communities they serve really want and need rapidly." He emphasized that UBM was in a position of strength. "In 2007, CMP profits rose 30% to $50.1 million, with margins reaching 15.6%, the company’s highest margins for five years." Levin told Media Business that UBM’s achievements this year have included "a consistent and disciplined approach on acquisitions, continued expansion in emerging markets and online innovation in conjunction with live media."
Top priorities for 2009: "The world is going to be a tougher place in 2009," Levin said. "We need to focus on ensuring our business prospers in this difficult time, as that will give us maximum opportunities going forward." UBM will continue to innovate on the Web and in virtual and live events, and to make selective acquisitions, he said. "Because we have been prudent managers of our balance sheet to date, our strong balance sheet gives us the opportunity to make acquisitions—and, clearly, pricing is getting more attractive," he said.
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