Glam Media Names Stern To Head New Social Communities Unit

Ryan-Stern

Signaling broader social ambitions, Glam Media on Monday named Ryan Stern as head of a newly created Social Communities unit.

With its blog-based origins, the female-focused media and ad network has always been "social." Yet, as CEO Samir Arora admits, the social landscape has changed rapidly since he founded Glam in 2005.

"We are now building the next-generation social communities platform for authors," Arora said. What that will eventually look like, and when it might launch, is not yet clear.

Formerly VP of publishing at FoodBuzz and Federated Media, Stern believes that Glam is already well positioned to thrive in an increasingly social media universe.

"Glam is ultimately the number one company to work at if you want to fundamentally transform the way authors want to build social communities at scale," Stern said.

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As VP of Social Communities at Glam, Stern will be expected to oversee some 2,000 publishers, bloggers, and authors, as well as create social activation and community programs.

Stern will report directly to Jennifer Salant, recently appointed SVP, Glam Publisher Network and Business Development.

As VP of Publishing at FoodBuzz, Stern led publishing and vertical communities, and was responsible for developing content and advertising relationships with an estimated 4,500 bloggers.

In addition, she was responsible for driving the social and community marketing platform for brand marketers to connect with foodies.

Late last year, Glam said its flagship U.S. women's division had achieved profitability. In February, Glam raised about $50 million in a Series E round of funding. Aeris Capital led the round along with existing investors Hubert Burda Media's Burda Digital Holding and Mizuho Capital. The funds were earmarked to build what Glam is calling a Digital Media Technology Center, along with global expansion and strategic acquisitions.

Meanwhile, IPO rumors were stoked when Glam hired Bruce Jaffe as CFO in May. Before leaving to run his own consultancy in 2008, Jaffe ran the corporate development group at Microsoft.

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