Fleischer exits MP3.com iCast music post

Exec leaves embattled site to head division at Netcaster

Joe Fleischer is ankling his post as corporate veepee at MP3.com to become CEO of the music division at Netcaster iCast.

Reporting to prexy and CEO Margaret Heffernan, he will divide his time between the L.A. and Gotham offices of iCast Music.

“Joe absolutely understands how the collaboration between online music and the traditional music industry can create a profitable business,” Heffernan said. “The beneficial interaction between online and offline is what iCast has always stood for.”

ICast is a network of entertainment sites that focuses on Netcasting known and unknown talent in music, film, animation and comedy.

“The challenge is also the biggest opportunity, which is to help the digital music space mature,” he said. “There’s a real hunger in consumers for diversity, and they want to get the choices that aren’t being offered to them.”

The company has strategic relationships with Artists Management Group and the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.

“ICast understands the importance of forging relationships with traditional media while creating innovative and viable online business models,” Fleischer said. “ICast also understands the fundamental differences of the Web and how it can deliver fresh content and a new kind of experience to entertainment fans. I’m excited to become part of that process.”

Before joining MP3.com earlier this year, Fleischer was veepee and senior editor at music industry tip sheet Hits. He previously was an A&R consultant, working with the big five labels.

Fleischer said he made the jump from MP3.com not because of the company’s recent legal woes but rather for the opportunity to head up a division of iCast. “It wasn’t based on my confidence — or lack of it — about MP3,” he told Daily Variety. “I have nothing but the deepest regard for the company.”

ICast is majority-owned by incubator CMGI, shares of which closed down almost 2% Thursday to $40.13.

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