Verizon Media Chief Marni Walden Sets Exit For February

Marni Walden, Verizon executive VP and president of global media, said today she will shift into an advisory role as of December 31 and leave the company altogether in February.

While not necessarily someone most Hollywood veterans know well, Walden’s purview was broad and as Verizon has matured and added media assets, her profile has increased. At one point, she was viewed as a potential successor to Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam.

After Dec. 31, Tim Armstrong, CEO of Oath, the company’s newly named subsidiary with 50-plus media brands, including Yahoo, HuffPo and AOL, will report directly to McAdam. The “telematics” data-transfer unit will now report to John Stratton, executive vice president and president of Global Operations.

“Marni helped build our wireless business, starting as a sales representative in a store, and grew into an inspirational leader and role model for so many at Verizon,” said McAdam. “She has most recently spearheaded Verizon’s entry into global digital media and telematics and will leave us in a strong competitive position.”

Not long ago, Verizon was little more than a phone company. But as broadband services and technology evolve, it has become a major player in the digital and video spaces, through it’s FiOS TV service, Go90 mobile video platform and major acquisitions like AOL and Yahoo. With rival AT&T poised to close its $85 billion deal for Time Warner, the level of competition on the content and programming side will increase markedly.

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