Podbridge Gets Yahoo Talent Infusion

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Podbridge, a podcast advertising startup, said today it has hired two former Yahoo (YHOO) digital media executives to help scale its business. Brian Steel, who until 2006 was president of Yahoo’s international search marketing and is a board member at fellow Web startups Pandora Media, Krugle, and MeeVee as well as an angel investor in Powerset, has been named Podbridge CEO. Founding CEO Murgesh Navar will stay on as chief strategy officer; he will also continue to serve on the company’s board.

The company also brought in Jeff Karnes, most recently director for multimedia search and products at Yahoo. Karnes will lead Podbridge’s marketing and product efforts.

Podbridge back in April raised $8.5 million from Sutter Hill Ventures, Mayfield Fund, and Worldview Technology Partners, bringing its total funding to about $18.5 million. We had previously been skeptical of the company for requiring podcast listeners to download an app that tracks their listening habits. That solution might produce more accurate metrics, but it’s a bit clunky.

Coincidentally, Steel is not the only recent outside CEO hire in this space. Look for more coverage later this week.

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