Complex Networks Promotes Video Execs Teams with Popsugar for

Complex Networks has promoted three executives to oversee its video efforts and content development.

General manager of video production, Cornell Brown, will take on the newly created position of general manager of video, and Jack Erwin, previously vice president of content operations, has been upped to general manager of content. He will help create original programming for the brands belonging to Complex Networks, the pop culture and lifestyle-focused media company co-owned by Hearst and Verizon.

A statement from Complex Networks notes Brown and Erin have been “instrumental” in Complex’s transition from a print publication into a "multi-platform, multi-brand media company," as well as the company's video growth this year.

Millennial male-focused pop-culture magazine Complex shuttered its print edition this time last year, eight months after it was bought by Verizon and Hearst in a co-ownership deal, in a move to focus on the brand’s digital efforts.

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Brown works on the creative development of YouTube series on the network’s channels and with linear and digital partners. He will continue to oversee the in-house production team of over 70 full-time staff producing a more than 20 daily and weekly series.

Complex is also getting a new editor in chief. Previously director of content, Damien Scott will be promoted to the top editor position as well as VP of content and development for Complex.

In addition to overseeing the Complex editorial and content teams, he will also work closely with Erwin and Brown in developing new programming under the Complex brand.

These promotions come as Complex Networks’ Chief Content Officer Noah Callahan-Bever steps down. He will remain part of the company by joining its advisory council.

Separately, Complex is collaborating with PopSugar, a millennial women-focused brand, on a new branded campaign, the first of a partnership made earlier this year to jointly develop and sell branded advertising.

This new campaign, called “From Where We Stand,” is for retailer Banana Republic. It includes three documentary-style videos featuring celebrity couple Bryan Greenberg of HBO’s “How to Make It in America” and Jamie Chung of Fox’s “The Gifted."

The campaign will run across both brands’ sites, YouTube channels and social media pages. The publishers are splitting revenue from the campaign.

Branded content now makes up about 60% of PopSugar's total revenue, with advertising from retailers up 25% so far this year, compared with the same period a year ago, according to The Wall Street Journal, which first reported on this branded ad campaign.

Branded and sponsored content will represent between 30% and 32% of Complex's total revenue in 2017, up from 12% in 2016.

This partnership is another example of publishers locking arms for greater scale to better compete for ad dollars against the duopoly of Facebook and Google.

Source: Media Post Social