Former M-GO boss John Batter joins Gracenote as CEO

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Media metadata specialist Gracenote has a new CEO: Gracenote, which became a subsidiary of Tribune Media just a few months ago, announced Tuesday that John Batter will be leading the charge starting immediately. Batter joins Gracenote from online video retailer M-Go, which happens to be one of Gracenote’s customers.

In an interview a few days ago, Batter told me that he learned about the importance of metadata while being the CEO of M-Go, the video service that launched by Dreamworks and Technicolor in 2013. And while at M-Go, he also learned another lesson: “You need to focus to be great,” Batter said during our interview.

M-Go initially had what Batter called “a grand plan,” which involved eventually offering cloud storage lockers for personal media as well as an internet-based live TV service, similar to what Dish and Sony plan to launch to compete with traditional cable TV. But eventually, the company decided to focus on a transactional video service, offering consumers movies and TV show episodes for rent and sale.

“I’m leaving M-Go at a time when the company is really well-positioned for the future,” Batter said. However, Batter’s exit leaves M-GO without a CEO for the time being. The company said this week that it has appointed its CTO Christophe Louvion to become the new COO, a role in which he will oversee the day-to-day leadership of the company, according to a spokesperson.

Batter is joining Gracenote at an interesting time: Tribune Media bought Gracenote from Sony for $170 million at the end of last year, and Gracenote has since been merged with Tribune’s own media data subsidiary Tribune Media Services. The combined company is now offering media data services in the TV, online video and music space, and Batter said that there may be an opportunity to expand into sports, games and books data as well.

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