Music video company Vevo this morning confirms reports that Rio Caraeff, its president and CEO, will leave the company at the end of the year. CFO Alan Price will act as interim CEO until a search firm can find another one, and the board approves the new hire.
In a joint statement, the Vevo ownership group, which includes Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Abu Dhabi Media Company and Google, said, “We thank Rio for his innumerable contributions to the company since its launch in 2009 and we wish him all the best in the future. As CEO, Rio has played a central role in building Vevo into the most visited destination for premium music video and entertainment, and in growing the Vevo brand around the world. As a result, we are both encouraged by Vevo’s current performance and excited about its potential to become a massive platform for music entertainment.”
In his statement, Caraeff said, in part, “We have built an amazing company, so it is with no small amount of regret that this chapter comes to an end, but after nearly six years, the timing is right for our board to identify my successor. I want to sincerely thank our board of directors for giving me this once in a lifetime opportunity.”
His contract expired at the end of the year, and reportedly, Caraeff purchased a home in Los Angeles, away from Vevo’s New York headquarters. But apparently, he has no employment destination ready to announce.
In a note to Vevo’s staff he said, ”I care very deeply about the company that along with many of you, I helped to get off the ground. I love her and will miss her but even more so, I will miss you all.”
The New York Post reported the company’s board wanted to move forward with a “fresh vision,” as the paper termed it. Last week it hired Stacy Moscatelli, a former Turner Broadcasting executive, as its vice president of marketing.Vevo, launched in 2009 by Caraeff, now has eight billion views monthly, and ownership earlier this year pledged support for growth initiatives after first mulling the idea of selling it. Those bold moves might become necessary as YouTube readies to premiere its own branded music service, Music Key. That could be interesting; Vevo is a top YouTube destination, and YouTube is one of its investors.