BuzzFeed has hired Will Hayward from The Wall Street Journal to be the site's first European advertising executive, BuzzFeed said Friday morning.
His charge is to expand the company's presence in Europe and build a dedicated sales team there. A spokeswoman for BuzzFeed said Mr. Hayward is looking to initially hire about five people for a dedicated sales team based in London.
Mr. Hayward, whose title is VP-advertising in Europe, started at BuzzFeed this week.
"BuzzFeed's growth in the U.K. and Europe has been astounding and I couldn't be more thrilled to bring its fantastic brand solutions across the pond," Mr. Hayward said in a statement.
BuzzFeed in March rolled out a U.K.-based editorial team. Its traffic in the region has grown steadily since then, increasing 121% year over year, to about 6.1 million unique visitors in August, according to ComScore. The number of unique visitors coming from the U.K. has climbed 141% year over year.
Its U.S. traffic for August was 20.6 million uniques, a 110% increase from the previous year, ComScore said.
"At BuzzFeed, we know that social is global and that couldn't be more evident with our growing U.K. audience and early success creating social programs with European brands," said Jon Steinberg, BuzzFeed president and COO, in a statement.
Mr. Hayward was the director of integrated marketing solutions in Europe, Middle East and Africa for The Wall Street Journal. Prior to the Journal, he held roles at The Economist, AOL,and media consultancy Report International.
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