As I posted yesterday, Peter Horan (image credit) is heading to IAC to run a suite of its media and advertising businesses, including Citysearch, Ask.com, and IAC’s other media assets. I emailed him three questions, here are his answers.
So, what drew you to this job?
The door was opened by a personal relationship. Jason Rapp lead the team at The New York Times that acquired About.com in 2005. During that process and the integration, we came to know, like and respect each other. Jason joined IAC in the fall as SVP of M&A and suggested that I talk to them about this job.
As those conversations progressed, I was very impressed with IAC and realized that this job would let me focus on several things that I am passionate about: the evolving relationship between search and content; developing mobile solutions; and local web products that work. We have the resources, the team, and the brands to really advance the state of the art in all of these areas. There’s also a proven sales team to help with the monetization.
It’s a unique opportunity.
Did you have a vision for what IAC needs, or is it more that you’re there to manage what already exists?
I am fortunate to be going into a situation where I can focus on growth and adding strategic value. There’s nothing to fix. Under strong leaders, the individual businesses have been doing well. The goal now is to bring together IAC’s amazing array of resources in new ways that benefit the consumer (and drive IAC’s share). Mobile and local solutions will be high up on the priority list. I will also be working to find ways to use search to help power other IAC business units.
Early this year, we will also be evaluating our options for monetization and distribution. I expect that to be a vigorous process. The initial overtures have been very interesting.
Hmmm. Can you unpack “evaluating our options for monetization and distribution” a bit more?
IAC’s Google contract comes up for renewal at the end of the year. The company has already started to explore options.
It will be one of my top priorities to make sure that we get the best deal for the company.
Economics will be a big part of that but so will distribution and other factors. Because this will be one of the most valuable parterships in play this year, we expect this to be a very vigorous process.