Smosh Hires Media Vet Daniel Tibbets As Its First CEO As YouTube Comedy Brand Plots Expansion
EXCLUSIVE: Smosh, the longtime supplier of YouTube comedy videos, has hired its first CEO.
Daniel Tibbets, a media veteran who most recently served as general manager for Robert Rodriguez’s El Rey Network, will guide the company as it looks to broaden its reach.
Smosh, which has 45 million subscribers and 10 billion lifetime views on YouTube, found itself in limbo for a time in 2018 when its then-parent, Defy Media, shuttered. Soon afterward, it was acquired by well-established digital studio Mythical Entertainment. Tibbets will report directly to Mythical’s founders, the comedy studio duo known as Rhett & Link.
“I’m very excited for this next stage of Smosh’s growth,” co-founder Ian Hecox said. “Sixteen years of work in Internet content, leading Smosh through so many changes in the digital business, has taught me a lot about what it takes to be a lasting brand on the Internet. Daniel is just the person we need to take us into the future, and I can’t wait to see what we can do together, in digital and beyond.”
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Tibbets has held senior roles at unscripted production company Bunim-Murray and gaming entertainment studio Machinima. He was the head of Foxlab and the VP of Production at 20th Television, developed and sold the HBO series Rome, and was the COO.
At the helm of Smosh, Tibbets is expected to extend the brand into traditional media, exploring television, live events, audio, publishing, and physical and digital games. The company is moving later this fall into its first standalone production studio space, a newly built space in Burbank.
“We and Ian were determined to find the perfect executive to lead this incredible brand and team into a new phase of growth, for the next decade and beyond,” Rhett & Link said. “Daniel is exactly that steward: a seasoned pro with a fluency in all aspects of entertainment, a history of partnering successfully with top creative talent, and a track record of success maximizing the value of popular consumer brands.”
Tibbets said, “With the strength of the talent in front and behind the camera, and the strong foundation already built, Smosh is well positioned to be a global multi-platform comedy brand. I look forward to expanding its reach and audience, and creating new business and content opportunities with partners throughout the entertainment industry.”
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