IAR Bits and Bytes for Tuesday

InChorus Trying to Salvage Itself

Struggling rich media e-mail marketer inChorus.com will stay afloat for at least a while longer, thanks to a $5 million line of credit from its investment bankers, whom the firm declined to name.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based inChorus said the offer of credit came after the bankers were briefed on its pending deal with online music Webcaster CyberRadio.com.

Last month, inChrous said it is in talks for either an exclusive licensing agreement with or acquisition of Fountain Hills, Ariz.-based CyberRadio.com. The final structure of the merged company has not yet been disclosed, though the deal is expected to close later this month.

CyberRadio.com is one of the largest Internet radio firms, running its own independent radio stations and also streaming the on-air content of local, offline radio stations. Overall, it claims more than 15,500 online radio stations. Its Internet music promotions unit, formed from a recent acquisition, seeks to promote unsigned artists and CyberRadio content.

InChorus, which creates tools for marketers to embed animation and sound into e-mail messages, said its bankers were wooed by the details of a new business strategy that incorporates CyberRadio.com’s products and services in unspecified ways.

Last month, Yuan also added that CyberRadio.com’s “provisional patents and copyrights on its business process and products” could complement and expand inChorus’ sales.

“The restructuring of our agreement with our investment bankers will provide the financial foundation we needed to re-invent ourselves and maximize our current and future product sales,” said inChorus.com chief executive William Yuan in a statement Tuesday. “Not only have we re-invented ourselves from a marketing standpoint but we are also focused on maintaining a cost effective management team and staff by utilizing the talented people of CyberRadio.

Questions about inChorus’ future have lingered since December, when the company quietly laid off what remained of its non-executive staff. In SEC filings, the company cited a “continued severe capital shortfall” as the reasons behind the layoffs, which left six executives at the firm. That round of cuts continued a series of gradual layoffs that began in late October.

Tribal DDB Chief Creative Officer Departs

Interactive agency Tribal DDB is losing its chief creative officer, as John Young departs to take a break “to re-energize and to survey new opportunities, [and] new partnerships.”

For the time being, Matt Freeman, Tribal DDB’s chief executive officer of North America, will take on Young’s role as the agency seeks a permanent replacement.

Young was one of the founding partners of DDB Digital, the precursor to Tribal DDB, and he previously was chief creative officer of Poppe Tyson, now Modem Media. Although it’s not known where Young will land, he’ll start out by focusing energy on the One Club’s One Show Interactive awards, which he organizes as chairman.

ad pepper media Appoints USA Business Development Director

European ad network ad pepper media has promoted John Machado to director of business development for ad pepper media USA.

In his new role, Machado is responsible for developing and implementing a national strategy for building, managing and promoting the overall growth of ad pepper media’s network in the U.S., while maintaining all client relations and negotiations for the company.

Machado originally joined ad pepper media in 1999 as a business development manager and, prior to joining ad pepper, served as vice president of sales for the entertainment firm Rogue Entertainment.

Shooting Gallery Taps New President

Entertainment production and creative services firm Shooting Gallery has selected Joseph Tedeschi as its new president. In his new role, Tedeschi will oversee and manage Shooting Gallerys operations and new business initiatives.

Prior to joining Shooting Gallery, Tedeschi served as vice president for Internet development at Primedia and also served as director of strategy & operations and assistant general counsel at the same firm.

I-Shop Relaunches Site

hillmancurtis, a digital design firm, has launched its redesigned corporate Web site at hillmancurtis.com. The site features collaboration with such firms as Adobe Systems, Macromedia, Intel, EURO RSCG DSW & Partners, and RollingStone.com.

New Media Firm Appoints Two

Automatic Media, the media company and parent of FEED Magazine, Suck.com, and Alt.Culture, has appointed two new executives.

Marie Graves has joined the company as the vice president of advertising sales and will be responsible for overseeing all advertising sales and client relationships for the online networks properties. Before joining the company, Graves was the vice president of business development for Sothebys.com.

In addition, Michael Kolbrener has joined Automatic Media as chief technology officer Most recently, Kolbrener was chief information officer for Ivy Mortgage, a subsidiary of Staten Island Savings Bank, a national mortgage lender.

DoubleClick Appoints Privacy Staff

Digital marketing solutions firm DoubleClick has announced several new privacy-related appointments in the U.S. and in Europe. Nuala O’Connor has been named to the position of vice president of data protection and chief privacy officer for e-mail and emerging technologies.

In this role, O’Connor will focus on developing consumer information policies for e-mail and new products, and enhancing internal privacy policies. Prior to joining DoubleClick, O’Connor was a member of the financial institutions regulatory group of Sidley & Austin.

Elise Berkower, formerly the director of adjudication at the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs, has been named the new privacy compliance officer. In this role she will be responsible for ensuring that DoubleClick’s clients meet all legal and industry-wide standards for protecting the privacy of consumers online. Also, Tom Kordich has been hired as DoubleClick’s director of privacy technology.

Kordich will be responsible for working with DoubleClick’s privacy, legal and technical teams to ensure that the company’s technology architecture is properly aligned with legal policy. Prior to joining DoubleClick, Kordich worked with Cablevision where he was responsible for both security engineering and business continuity as well as disaster resumption.

Lastly, Amanda Chandler, formerly the compliance manager for the police and criminal justice sector of the Data Protection Commissioner in the United Kingdom, has been named chief privacy officer and director of data protection for the European region. Chandler will be responsible for overseeing DoubleClick’s privacy strategies across Europe.

DoubleClick has long been under scrutiny by the FTC and state attorneys general for its privacy practices.

COVI Studios Lands FlightTime

FlightTime, a provider of air charter services, has named rich media products and services firm COVI Studios as its agency of record for new media. Under the agreement, COVI will be responsible for redesigning FlightTime’s Web site as well as handling creative services for related online and offline marketing communications programs.

Current COVI clients include Dewalt Tools/Black & Decker, NBC, MSNBC, and MLB Productions.

L90 Appoints Avenue A Founder to Executive Post

Ad network L90 has tapped Michael Leo to executive vice president of business development. Prior to this, Leo was the founder and chief sales officer of the digital marketing and technology company, Avenue A.

B2BWorks Promotes Sales Managers

Online B2B ad network B2BWorks announced the addition of four key sales executives to its national sales team. Patrick Richgels and Michael Blaauboer have been named western regional sales managers in the San Francisco office. Richgels most recently served as a business development director for the Integrated Media Network while Blaauboer served as a sales account executive for Talk City.

In addition, Scott Conselyea has been named the eastern regional sales manager for New York and Chad Wiebesick has been named an account executive for the Chicago office. Conselyea joins B2BWorks from Advanstar Communications, where he served as an account executive while Wiebesick was previously the media coordinator for Beyond Interactive.

eTour.com Beefs Up Ad Sales Group

eTour.com, an online tour service, has announced the appointment of three executives to its advertising sales team. Dan Payomo has been named vice president of advertising sales for eTour’s western division. Payomo comes to eTour from Promotions.com where he was head of sales and client services. Gordon Frankel-Light has joined the eTour Los Angeles office as a senior account executive. Prior to this, Frankel-Light served as an account manager for About.com. Lastly, Russ Ellis has been named vice president of advertising sales for eTour’s eastern division. Before joining eTour, Ellis was the advertising director of National Geographic Traveler Magazine, U.S News and World Report, and Fast Company.

MSNBC.com Appoints Head of Development and Design

Online news site MSNBC.com has named Ona Karasa as its new vice president of development and design. In this new role, Karasa will be overseeing all technology groups and operations as well as the non-editorial components of the design team.

Prior to this, Karasa had her own management consulting firm where she provided ongoing strategic planning, training and coaching to senior managers in high-tech companies, including MSNBC.com.

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