Snapchat Exec Cheryl Idell Snapped Up for Post at WarnerMedia

WarnerMedia Entertainment has named former Snapchat exec Cheryl Idell EVP and chief research officer of WarnerMedia Entertainment and Direct-to-Consumer.

She will report to Bob Greenblatt, chairman, WarnerMedia Entertainment and Direct-to-Consumer.

Idell will be responsible for overseeing the functional areas of research across WarnerMedia Entertainment, centralizing expertise in viewership, content, and strategic market research; insights; and analytics. Her purview will also include product research and all aspects of research for the upcoming WarnerMedia Direct-to-Consumer offering HBO Max.

“As the evolution of video consumption continues to move at a rapid pace, staying at the forefront of technology, consumer trends and future capabilities is imperative for our success,” Greenblatt said in a statement. “Cheryl’s background in technology and entertainment makes her the perfect candidate to lead our research teams and build an industry-leading research practice that will take us into the future.”

“I could not be more excited about the opportunity to work for Bob and alongside the exceptional executives and creators at WarnerMedia,” Idell said in a statement. “It is such a thrilling time to be working in this business and WarnerMedia Entertainment has emerged as one of the biggest, boldest players through creativity and innovation. The company’s best-in-class brands, networks and programs make this a truly irresistible opportunity. I can’t wait to lead this incredible research team and help shape the future of audience insights and engagement through a combination of linear, streaming and direct-to-consumer data, research and analytics.”

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Idell most recently served as head of U.S. vertical measurement at Snap Inc. where she led Snapchat’s measurement strategy and the resulting execution across all U.S. advertiser clients. Idell’s team was responsible for providing solutions and strategic guidance to advertisers on measurement and optimization of the online and offline impact of Snapchat advertising.

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Before her stint at Snapchat, Idell led Mindshare’s West Coast offices, working with clients across a diverse array of sectors including studio/entertainment, consumer packaged goods, spirits, retail and travel/hospitality. She was also the EVP of client solutions for Nielsen, holding leadership roles focused on driving Nielsen’s revenue growth through development of media analytics and research products, solutions, strategies and practices. Prior to joining Nielsen, Idell held executive level positions at 20th Century Fox, IAG Research and Initiative Media.

 

Movies Anywhere and Data

Overlooked in the quibbles with digital rights collection service Movies Anywhere (Why no TV shows? Where are Paramount and Lionsgate?) is a potential killer app that those in the transactional business may have overlooked — data.

At last month’s Entertainment Merchants Association OTT_X@ Pipeline 2019 conference in Los Angeles, Movies Anywhere GM Karin Gilford noted, “We’re using data in a ton of ways.

“We’re using a lot of the same in­dustry data that you guys consume to make product decisions and now complementing that with robust usage data that we have in the app,” she said.

Usage data, that is the key. Nev­er before has the industry had cross-studio, cross-retailer usage data like this. It’s gold.

Subscription video-on-demand data from Netflix and Amazon Prime are closely guarded by those services, which may be part of the reason why the impending Disney+, Apple TV+ and others are charging a nominal sub fee to gather customers and data.

Movies Anywhere is a “Netflix for transactional,” an unprecedent­ed view into the buying habits and libraries of movie collectors. And Gilford noted that the service is add­ing theatrical information, including Rotten Tomatoes ratings, to gauge which films consumers most desire.

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“Studios having visibility into that data is going to make for a more powerful home entertainment busi­ness and a more powerful EST busi­ness,” Gilford said.

Yes, data is power. Just ask Face­book and Google.

IHS Markit, Informa Swap Business Units, including OTT and Media

London-based research firms IHS Markit and Informa May 22 announced a swap of select business units — including the former’s technology, media and telecom business for the latter’s agribusiness intelligence group.

Informa, whose focus has been on international exhibitions, events, information services and scholarly research group, will up its sights on over-the-top video (i.e. Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, etc.), media and related technology.

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The company is giving IHS Markit $30 million in cash to complete the deal, which is expected to close in July, pending regulatory approval.

“This agreement is very positive for both IHS Markit and Informa, increasing the focus of each company on core markets where [each] has particular strengths and a long-term commitment to invest and grow,” Lance Uggla, CEO of IHS Markit and Stephen Carter, group chief executive, Informa PLC, said in a joint statement.

“Our ambitions for Informa Tech will be further enhanced by the addition of the IHS Markit TMT portfolio, extending our customer and international reach, creating a strong platform for future growth,” added Carter.

IHS Markit will retain RootMetrics, its benchmarking business and a portion of its market intelligence business.

IHS acquired Markit in 2016 for $5.5 billion, creating a data analytics powerhouse. In 2018, it acquired financial services firm Ipreo for $1.86 billion.

 

Sony Alums Join Data Analytics Company’s New International Division

Data analytics company Algomus/Algo.ai has created an international division based in London.

The company has named Aodan Coburn, formerly EVP International at Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, as president, Algo.ai International. Miguel Geli, previously division CIO for Sony Pictures and European MD of Sony Retail Services Europe, has been appointed COO, Algo.ai International.

Algo.ai comprises a team of software engineers, mathematicians, business analysts, machine learning experts and data scientists with extensive industry knowledge of manufacturing, distribution and retail supply chains to support the use of data to drive savings.

“This significant development reflects our desire to service our current customers on a broader territory basis and supports our ambition to expand both our geographical and industry reach,” CEO Amjad Hussain said in a statement.

“International expansion has been a strategic goal for some time, and with these two key appointments we are now well-positioned to repeat the tremendous growth opportunities we have seen domestically,” said John Daly, president of Algo.ai, in a statement.

“I’m delighted to have the opportunity to play a part in the Algomus story as this innovative company continues on its journey of global growth,” Coburn said in a statement.

“Algo.ai is a company with significant global potential which I am thrilled now to be part of,” Geli added in a statement.

Algomus is headquartered in Detroit, with additional offices in Los Angeles and now London.

Algo.ai created Algo, the world’s first supply chain analyst bot. Algo connects artificial intelligence, augmented reality and automation to retailers, distributors and manufacturers. The tool helps with activities including demand and inventory planning, sales forecasting, new product lifecycle management, and assortment optimization.

Cinelytic Gets $2.25 Million Investment

Data analytics firm Cinelytic announced a $2.25 million investment by Thailand’s T&B Media Global.

“The deal will enable Cinelytic to further advance its leading role in AI driven decision support for the entertainment industry,” according to a company press release.

Cinelytic combines artificial intelligence and cloud-based technologies to enable entertainment industry professionals to make faster, and better-informed, decisions throughout the content value chain by providing comprehensive data, predictive analytics and project management tools in an integrated online platform, according to the release.

“We are witnessing a seismic shift in the entertainment industry: while rapid technological advances have disrupted the traditional entertainment industry, they have also created huge opportunities,” said Tobias Queisser, co-founder and CEO of Cinelytic, in a statement. “By using the latest in machine learning, and cloud-based technology, we are able to provide the entertainment industry with game-changing insights in real-time. This investment enables us to expand Cinelytic’s platform for Film, TV and explore further cross verticals. We are delighted to have partnered with T&B Media Global who share and support our vision.”

“Companies in industries across the world have to begin with a data driven approach,” said Dr. Jwanwat Ahriyavraromp, CEO of T&B Media Global, in a statement. “Understanding the pros and cons of all scenarios should be foundational to any enterprise, and the same applies to entertainment. Cinelytic aggregates massive amounts of entertainment-based data and uses AI to provide invaluable analysis of potential returns for storytellers. It is a tool that will revolutionize how stories get told and launched into the market. We are very pleased to help be a part of this future-forward solution.”