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We Have a New CEO!

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Just like that, the summer of 2008 has come to an end here in the U.S. (though gratefully, San Francisco is only going to get warmer over the next 60 days.) Summer is the one time when the business community, that of Silicon Valley in particular, pauses a bit to refresh and recharge.

No such break for us – we have been toiling away, working hard to put together Mobilize, our next-generation mobile conference. (Get your tickets here.) One person that’s been in the trenches throughout is Paul Walborsky, who joined the company a little over a year ago as chief operating officer.

Today it gives me great pleasure to announce that Paul has been promoted to chief executive officer. As CEO, he will lead us through our next phase, in which we will go from being a small network of niche blogs to being a new media company with much bigger horizons.

Bringing on board Paul — a veteran of Wall Street, a founder of (two) startups and most importantly, a trusted friend — was perhaps the single most important decision I’ve ever made in terms of shaping the future of our company.

While the first two years have been devoted to laying the groundwork befitting our future, the next few years are going to be about executing our game plan. And Paul over the past 12 months has proved that he can execute.

Since he signed on, we have doubled our revenues, more than doubled the number of monthly visitors to our network and hosted two sold-out conferences (NewTeeVee Live and Structure 08). And we acquired jkOnTheRun, our first, but not our last, acquisition.

We are looking to grow even more, not only organically, but also through acquisitions and content partnerships. Given the scope of my ambitions, we are only going to get bigger.

Paul has all the right skills to lead us into the future. His ability to focus, motivate and inspire — all while paying close attention to the bottom line — make him an exemplary leader, while his easy smile and ability to stay positive in times of adversity make him a great co-worker. And like me, Paul uses pop culture references to make his points. Like this little video from Any Given Sunday:

As for me, I’m not going anywhere –- my title is simply changing to that of Founder/Chairman. I am going to focus on the areas where my skills add the most value to our company, such as content and the strategic use of technology to build better a editorial experience. I will outline those plans in a separate post later this week, but today is all about Paul. Please join me in congratulating him!

Photo by Photo Matt.

38 Responses to “We Have a New CEO!”

  1. @all Thanks for your kind words.

    @omfut, nope we are not planning to lose anything – in fact we are getting ready to double down and make things more fun for all, not to mention you the readers.

    @john, you know it brother ;-)

    @Richard, thank you for being part of that industry that needs more people like you and Paul.

    @Siddy Boy, funny you should ask. I am sitting down with Rev3 to re-invent the show and bring it back real soon. I want to do things a little differently that I had been doing. Stay tuned for more details.

  2. Hi Om , First let me congratulate Paul for his promotion. I then have to ask you something. You are no longer the CEO. So your responsibilities should have reduced. You also look a lot fitter. So when can we see you again in the GigaOM Show on Rev3? Seriously it was my favorite Rev3 show. So please start after you have completed Mobilize conference. Best of Luck.

  3. OM,
    Having a COO who can execute is awesome and having them be the CEO is better.

    Congrats. More importantly a healthy outcome for you and most likely lucrative for the team. Last time I checked the CEO reports to the Chairman :-)

    Seriously congrats

  4. Congratulations OM for this smooth transitioning of role, and Paul for
    the getting new Role.

    Just wondering, if it has anything to do with your recent health Issues. (I don’t think you have been taking it slow lately :-))
    I have often heard that the founders are not always the best CEO. Founders fit the role for those initial years where everything is so
    Uncertain. Once the startup is off the hook, getting a dedicated CEO makes lot more sense so that founders can focus on new initiatives. I’m hoping the latter is true and if so- are we gone see lot of new initiatives with gigaom.
    On a side note, hope you guys don’t loose the power of blogging in the
    dream of becoming a media company. Lately, it seems like niche blogs are going mainstream media or getting bought over by mainstream media.

  5. Congrats to Paul and the GigaOm team!

    It has been a great pleasure to watch your company grow, and we wish you much success in the future. We look forward to the upcoming networking and industry events, and collaborating on future projects.

    The VoloMedia Team

  6. This is wonderful news for the entire GigaOm team. All of us at True have been extremely impressed with Paul’s talent, experience and vision this past year, and we think he will be an exceptional leader for all of us at GigaOm.

    Well done Om.

    Congratulations Paul!

    Jon Callaghan