Digital ad exec to head Time Warner's publishing group

Time Warner topper Jeff Bewkes Wednesday named digital advertising exec Laura Lang as CEO of the conglom’s Time Inc. publishing group, the nation’s largest and home to People magazine, InStyle, Time and Sports Illustrated.

Lang has served since 2008 as CEO of digital marketing agency Digitas, owned by French ad giant Publicis. Her appointment signals the company’s increasing emphasis on digital solutions to counter a challenging print market.

She takes the reins of Time Inc. in January from an interim management team of editor-in-chief John Huey, chief financial officer Howard Averill and general counsel Maurice Edelson, who have been leading the company since the resignation of Jack Griffin last February after only six months on the job.

“Laura’s leadership experience, brand management expertise, understanding of digital and marketing and strong relationships with the creative and advertising communities are a great fit for Time Inc. She is the right person to lead the company as it aggressively evolves its businesses during a time of great change and opportunity in publishing,” Bewkes said in a statement.

“Time Inc’s premier brands and stellar reputation, along with Time Warner’s commitment to lead the digital transformation of all its businesses, will lead to great opportunities to deepen our connections with consumers,” Lang said.

Before joining Digitas in 1999, Lang was president of Marketing Corp. of America, where she provided strategic consulting services to clients in pharmaceutical, technology, entertainment and financial services. She also led the consulting practice at Yankelovich Clancy Shulman. Earlier in her career, Lang worked in strategic planning at Pfizer and brand management at Quaker Oats and Bristol Myers.

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