Scripps Taps Deanna Brown To Lead Interactive Group

The Yahoo brain drain continues.

Scripps Networks has hired away Deanna Brown as president of its Interactive Group. Brown, who served as the general manager of Yahoo Media Group's Lifestyles business unit, joins a long list of recently departed executives from the Internet giant.

E.W. Scripps' online divisions have been on a tear lately, bringing in $21 million in fourth-quarter revenue--marking a 90% jump year-over-year. CPMs for its broadband outlets--which include HGTV and DIY network--are in the $30-$35 range, versus $15-$18 for a more traditional Internet banner or other presence. Scripps Networks is the fastest-growing division of The E.W. Scripps Co., posting revenues of more than $1 billion in 2006.

"We will continue to extend our interactive business beyond our existing brands to include the entire food and shelter categories," said John Lansing, president of Scripps Networks. Scripps' online properties, which include 12 broadband channels, focus on topics such as kitchen, bath design, gardening, crafts and healthy eating, attracting on average more than 13 million unique visitors per month in 2006.

The loss of Brown comes at a difficult time for Yahoo, which is trying to regain momentum following a string of major executive losses.

Late last year, Yahoo lost its director of corporate development, Michael Marquez, to CBS. His exit came just weeks after its COO Dan Rosensweig and media group head Lloyd Braun moved on amid major restructuring. Other recent departures include David Katz, head of Yahoo Sports and Studios; Bill Demas, senior vice president at the company's publisher network; and William Johnson, vice president and general manager of the group. Also, in February, Yahoo Music lost two key executives, David Goldberg and Robert Roback, vice presidents and general managers of Yahoo Music.

A longtime online industry vet, Brown's previous experience includes serving as vice president/general manager of the Life Management division of AOL, where she led numerous initiatives, including a Diet/Fitness area, a Billpay product and a coupon offering. Brown was also responsible for the re-launch of AOL's Food, Finance, Research & Learn, as well as Home and Real Estate verticals.