'Politico' Taps Kissel As VP-GM, Product, 'NYT' Expands Audio Team

Following a banner year across audience and advertising, Politico is bringing on Aaron Kissel as its vice president-general manager of product.

Kissel brings seasoned expertise in product, sales and general management to the publication. Having spent 13 years with CEB, Kissel also held a variety of roles at research and advisory company Gartner and was Chief Commercial Officer at New-York based Enigma Technologies.

Over the course of his career, Kissel has launched dozens of businesses as product manager and business unit manager, leading teams to realize over $300 million in revenue.

Kissel comes to Politico as the company is deeply involved in building its future, following a period of heavy investment in infrastructure and technology over the last couple of years, Politico CEO Patrick Steel told Publishers Daily. This new focus has given Politico a sophisticated understanding of its audience, which they can offer advertisers eager to target the outlet's influencers.



According to Steel, Politico’s audience has more than doubled in growth over the past two years, claiming 28 million unique visitors last month. The outlet’s subscription business Politico Pro, which grew 25% last year, now accounts for over half of the company’s total revenue.

In his new role, Kissel will focus on a variety of areas, including audience development, including how Politico can enhance engagement across mobile.

Politico, which has seen great growth internationally, specifically across Europe, and has expanded to Canada and China, has also been exploring the regulatory space and developing new products for it. Under Kissel’s direction, Politico will create new products, tools and content focused on this specific area, which Steel says is relatively opaque. 

“To find someone [like Kissel] who could be a Chief Product Officer at a Fortune 500 company further demonstrates not only his passion for Politico’s mission, but a recognition that this segment of the market will continue to grow strongly,” said Steel.

Separately, The New York Times continues to grow its audio division, announcing five new hires this week. The new hires will support the popular podcast “The Daily” and collaborate with Times journalists as they explore audio storytelling through a new series this year. 

Joining the audio team are Lisa Chow as senior editor for “The Daily,” Marc Georges, editor for “The Daily,” Adizah Eghan and Eric Kurpke both filling roles of news producers for “The Daily,” and Kelly Prime, who returns to The New York Times Audio as a narrative producer.

Chow, Georges and Kurpke will begin their new roles March 25, while Eghan and Prime will start April 29.

Julie Simon also joins the Audio team as deputy director, focusing on audience strategy and operations.

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