MTV EXPANDS BRAND INTEGRATION STRATEGIES
Announces Product-Placement Deal With Hewlett-Packard
MTV NETWORKS PLANS GLOBAL EXPANSION FOR COMEDY CENTRAL
Will Also Launch New Channels for U.S. Hispanic Youth
LARRY DIVNEY RETURNS TO VIACOM
Named COO of MTV Networks Ad Sales
JUDY MCGRATH NAMED CEO OF MTV NETWORKS
Networks Operations and Sales Chief Mark Rosenthal to Leave
MEL KARMAZIN RESIGNS FROM VIACOM
Tom Freston and Leslie Moonves Named Co-COOs
General manager for VH1
In addition, Tom Calderone moves from executive vice president of music programming and talent for MTV and MTV2 to general manager of VH1. He and Ms. Norman will report to Van Toffler, president of MTV Networks' music/films/Logo group. A president for VH1 has not been named.
The moves take place a week after MTV Networks held its upfront presentation, where it highlighted new programming and advertising opportunities for marketers across its 14 ad-supported channels -- among them MTV, VH1, CMT, Nickelodeon, Spike and Comedy Central -- and seven Web sites. Just prior to the upfront presentation, Jeff Lucas, former president of ad sales for NBC Universal's cable assets, including USA Network, Bravo and Sci Fi Channel, joined MTV Networks as Comedy Central's ad chief.
Credited with VH1 ratings gain
Ms. Norman, who represented VH1 at the recent upfront presentation, is largely credited with leading VH1 through its current ratings uptick -- 11 consecutive quarters of growth. It's up 3% in the lucrative ratings category of 18- to 49-year-olds this season over last, but had a breakout February when it averaged 1.4 million viewers and is up 125% in the 18-49 demographic from last year.
Mr. Calderone, meanwhile, has been instrumental in the relaunch and rebranding of MTV2, which kicked off in January. The network has been winning critical reviews for its underground hit show Wonder Showzen and Discover and Download, a show featuring new music and artists that viewers can then download via mtv2.com.
A year of change
Most of MTV Network's high-ranking staff has either changed titles or come on board in the past year. Near the end of 2004, Larry Divney came out of retirement to head sales for MTV Networks, and appointed Comedy Central's former head of ad sales, Hank Close, to the No. 2 post. Judy McGrath was promoted from co-president to CEO of MTV Networks in July of that year, after parent Viacom changed its leadership following the resignation of its president and chief operating officer Mel Karmazin.