Nine digital and former marketing chief, Alex Parsons, announces exit

Media giant confirms Parsons won't be directly replaced and announces promotions for a number of key executives

Nine's chief digital and marketing officer, Alex Parsons
Nine's chief digital and marketing officer, Alex Parsons

Nine has confirmed digital chief and former marketing leader, Alex Parsons, will not be directly replaced following his departure at the end of the month after 10 years with the media giant.

Parsons has spent the last three years leading Nine’s digital business as well as marketing as its chief digital and marketing officer, and was responsible for overseeing the shift away from Nine’s Mi9 joint venture with Microsoft to create standalone business, Nine Digital. This led to the launch of several new online properties such as nine.com.au, the 9Honey women’s network and the organisation’s on-demand TV offering, 9Now.  

Prior to his digital remit, Parsons held a number of senior roles including CEO of RateCity, managing director of Ninemsn, and also worked as a director across Nine subsidiaries, Pedestrian.TV and CarAdvice.

In a statement, Nine said Parsons will leave at the end of September and will not be directly replaced. Instead, several existing managers are gaining new remits. Niamh Collins is being promoted to general manager of video including 9Now, reporting into director of TV, Michael Healey. Current 9Honey chief, Helen McCabe, will now assume the new title of digital content director, reporting to CEO, Hugh Marks.

In addition, director of business strategy and operations, Christiaan Rutten, becomes digital chief operating officer reporting to CFO, Greg Barnes, retaining existing responsibilities but increasing his focus on revenue, expenses and earnings across the digital business. Nine CIO, Mat Yelavich, will also report in Barnes and continue to drive all technology aspects of the business.

Parsons said it had been an amazing experience working with the Nine team in Australia but said he was ready for a new challenge.

“I’m immensely proud of everything my team has achieved, particularly in getting nine.com.au back to the top of the commercial news rankings, launching the 9Honey women’s network, launching 9Now and developing our data asset, which now has more than 4 million subscribers,” he said.

Read more: CMO interview: How Nine is tapping audience data for advertising, engagement and content innovation

Nine partners with LiveRamp to boost audience targeting capabilities

Nine partners with Equifax to boost finance and insurance customer data offering

APEX and Red Planet strike consumer data sharing deal

“I’m confident that I’m leaving the digital business in good shape and that it will continue to be a key player in the Australian digital landscape for years to come.”

Marks also noted Parson’s significant contribution to the growth and evolution of the Nine business. “He has successfully evolved Nine Digital from the business built around the long-term Microsoft joint venture arrangement, to the growing content and platform business it is today. I would like to thank him for his time and energy,” he said.

In an email circulated to staff, Marks added Parsons had been a key player in the Nine management team for a number of years and a driving force not just in shaping digital, “but our overall business of the future”.

“Change in the media business is a constant and it is inevitable. While that change is challenging and complex, both Alex and I believe this presents huge opportunities for the future of our business,” Marks continued.    

“Key to that change is Nine embracing ourselves as a content business first and foremost. A content business that owns a number of its own operating platforms that are powerful in their own right but that when operated effectively together are unbeatable..  

“In television, being not just the free to air channels that we’ve known for decades, but which now include both 9Now and our STAN joint venture with Fairfax Media. The merger of television and technology. A re-imagined television business already working in action with the success we are seeing across all of these platforms.  

At the same time, our television and digital publishing businesses are becoming more integrated in line with our strategy. Working with each other but also owning their own distinct place in our growing content business. And it is in this space that we must continue to invest.”  

Marks flagged plans to further develop the digital publishing business and investment into creating new opportunities across its four content pillars of news, sport, entertainment and Lifestyle.  

“Our future is as a digital business,” he added.  

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia, or check us out on Google+:google.com/+CmoAu   

 

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Blog Posts

Building a human-curated brand

If the FANG (Facebook, Amazon, Netflix, Google) sector and their measured worth are the final argument for the successful 21st Century model, then they are beyond reproach. Fine-tuning masses of algorithms to reduce human touchpoints and deliver wild returns to investors—all with workforces infinitesimally small compared to the giants of the 20th Century—has been proven out.

Will Smith

Co-founder and head of new markets, The Plum Guide

Sustainability trends brands can expect in 2020

​Marketers have made strides this year in sustainability with the number of brands rallying behind the Not Business As Usual alliance for action against climate change being a sign of the times. While sustainability efforts have gained momentum this year, 2020 is shaping up to be the year brands are really held accountable for their work in this area.

Ben King

CSR manager & sustainability expert, Finder

The trouble with Scotty from Marketing

As a Marketer, the ‘Scotty from Marketing’ meme troubles me.

Natalie Robinson

Director of marketing and communications, Melbourne Polytechnic

It's a pretty interesting article to read. I will learn more about this company later.

Dan Bullock

40 staff and 1000 contracts affected as foodora closes its Australian operations

Read more

If you think it can benefit both consumer and seller then it would be great

Simon Bird

Why Ford is counting on the Internet of Things to drive customer engagement

Read more

It's a good idea. Customers really should control their data. Now I understand why it's important.

Elvin Huntsberry

Salesforce CMO: Modern marketers have an obligation to give customers control of their data

Read more

Instagram changes algorithms every time you get used to them. It really pisses me off. What else pisses me off? The fact that Instagram d...

Nickwood

Instagram loses the like in Australia; industry reacts positively

Read more

I tried www.analisa.io to see my Instagram Insight

Dina Rahmawati

7 marketing technology predictions for 2016

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in