Neil Ashe Leaving As President Of CBS Interactive; Search Underway

CBS (NYSE: CBS) started the year with the departure of Quincy Smith as head of digital and will start the next one without Neil Ashe, president of CBS Interactive, paidContent has confirmed.

The news was first reported by Kara at All Things D, who said she heard from people being interviewed for the job. But the statement from a CBS spokesman downplayed any sense of urgency to fill the slot: “Neil has helped make CBSi into the successful and profitable business it is today. Looking out into 2011, we are working on a relaxed timeframe to name a successor to his post, as he embarks on his next great thing.”

As CEO of CNET Networks, Ashe helped engineer the tech media company’s $1.8 billion sale to CBS in 2008; as second to Smith and then head of digital, he was responsible for leading the integration between the two. More to come.