EXCLUSIVE: Hartbeat is expanding its senior leadership team, adding former Disney and NBCUniversal executive Brian Price to head Pulse, its new branded content studio, and Candisse Williamson from Skybound Entertainment and The Madison Square Garden Company to run business and legal affairs.
The company also upped Mike Stein to EVP, Head of TV & Audio, reporting to President & Chief Content Officer, Bryan Smiley, and Monti Sehmi to EVP, Head of Finance and Operations.
Hartbeat was formed by the merger Hart’s Laugh Out Loud and HartBeat Productions, bolstered by a $100 million capital raise. It said today it plans to grow its executive team across its three main divisions – Hartbeat Studios, which finances, develops and produces content; Hartbeat Media, events and distribution; and Pulse, a branded content and entertainment studio and consultancy.
Price joins Hartbeat as SVP, Head of Branded Content & Creative Partnerships overseeing Pulse to develop creative strategies for new and existing brand partners. Clients include Sam’s Club, Lyft, P&G, Chase Sapphire and Samsung. He comes from the Walt Disney Company, where he led creative, business operations and strategy teams in branded content and marketing. He was previously VP, Creative Partnerships & Innovation at NBCUniversal and served on the NBCUniversal Marketing Council.
Williamson joins Hartbeat as EVP, General Counsel, after serving as General Counsel at Skybound Entertainment, where she guided franchises including The Walking Dead, Invincible and Impact Winter.
“As we continue to grow and recruit leaders to help us architect the future of comedic entertainment, these new appointments bring with them a rich and diverse set of experiences, cross-functional expertise, and entrepreneurial drive to help accelerate our efforts. Brian C. Price is a multiplatform storyteller with the creative vision and comedic sensibility to help evolve Hartbeat’s brand while serving as a thought partner to our advertising partners. Candisse Williamson brings the strategic acumen and deal-making expertise to scale our internal legal function while driving key corporate and commercial initiatives,” says Hartbeat CEO Thai Randolph. “We’re also proud to continue our partnership with Mike Stein, who has played a critical role in expanding Hartbeat’s TV footprint and is now poised to apply the same level of innovation to our audio efforts. Monti Sehmi has played an integral role in helping to drive profitability and efficiency, which he will continue to do in his new post as we continue to scale the business.”
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