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Spanfeller plans to form media management firm

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Forbes Inc. announced last Thursday that Jim Spanfeller has resigned as president-CEO of Forbes.com after running the company's Web site for nine years. Spanfeller, who has committed to stay on at Forbes.com through Labor Day to ease the transition, is leaving to start his own media management company. After stints at Ziff Davis, Newsweek and American Express Publishing, Spanfeller joined Forbes.com and provided the vision for turning it into a major news aggregation site that attracts about about 18 million. He embraced online video, turning Forbes.com reporters into something akin to TV news reporters. He has also embraced controversy, especially when it comes to Google, which he sees as making money off the backs of content creators such as Forbes.com. “Forbes.com has truly been a truly wonderful ride, and I am deeply in debt to the Forbes family for letting me be a part of it,” Spanfeller said in a statement. In an interview with BtoB, he said that he hoped to have his media management business launched in the fall. He plans for his company to run the digital portion of media companies as standalone units in the same way that he initially ran Forbes.com before Forbes announced plans to unify the digital and print businesses. “I'll take over as we did for Forbes.com,” he said. “It's the model we set up when I first got involved. It was basically a standalone and operated separately from the magazine, and I operated it as such.” A successor to Spanfeller has not been named. —S.C.
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