Vevo Taps Rice As Chief Product Officer

Vevo on Thursday named David Rice to the new post of chief product officer.

Reporting directly to Vevo President/CEO Rio Caraeff, Rice will oversee product development for the music video platform.

Rice most recently served as senior vice president and GM of CBS Interactive’s Games Division, where he managed GameSpot, GameFAQs, GiantBomb and ComicVine. Prior to CBS Interactive, Rice worked at Yahoo from 2010 through 2012. As vice president of media properties at the portal, he was credited with relaunching its Sports, News, Finance, Homepage and Entertainment properties, along with several new properties, including Yahoo Screen. 

This past year, it was widely reported that Vevo’s co-owners -- including Vivendi SA’s Universal Music Group, Sony's Sony Music Entertainment, Google and Abu Dhabi Media -- were preparing to sell the site.

Then, in April, the New York Post reported that the owners had decided to take the property off the market in light of stronger-than-expected growth.

In June, however, The Information reported that discussions to sell Vevo were still ongoing. Potential buyers are said to include DreamWorks Animation SKG, Liberty Media and a joint venture owned by AT&T and Chernin Group.

Worldwide, Vevo recorded nearly 7 billion video views in June, according to internal estimates. Also according to the venture, its TV apps have experienced 196% growth in streams year over-year, with viewers spending an average 133 minutes watching 40 videos per month.

Gearing up for a solo mission or gussying itself up for a sale, Vevo has been forging partnerships left and right.

Last month, Vevo partnered with Pinterest to add a “Pin It” button to the sharing options featured alongside all videos on Vevo.com and its iOS apps. Per the pact, Vevo’s music videos can now be freely shared among Pinterest users. Pre-roll ads, which run through Vevo’s player, are also appearing in videos pinned on Pinterest.

In May, Vevo tapped the native ad specialists at Mirriad to mix brand messages into music videos.

Expanding on their Amplify partnership, Vevo also recently began working with Twitter on “Certified CountUps” -- an initiative to embed videos into targeted tweets from Vevo, brands, artists and fans.

Earlier this year, Vevo announced a program for video premieres with AT&T, which consists of the carrier's brand being integrated into a series of video premieres from top artists. Among other programming initiatives, Vevo has been investing additional resources into its flagship property “Certified.”

Vevo plans to debut en event slate dubbed “Certified Live” this fall, which will include two yet-to-be-named performers. The network expects the show to translate to about 80 pieces of content, including user-generated video and 10 songs from each performer.  

Neither Rice or any Vevo executives were free to discuss the appointment by press time.

Recommend (1) Print RSS