Facebook Hires Pinterest Exec Mike Bidgoli to Lead Watch Video Product Team

Facebook’s Watch has a new product leader: Mike Bidgoli, previously advertising product lead at image-based search and sharing service Pinterest.

At Facebook, Bidgoli has been named head of product for Facebook Watch, the social giant’s new platform for episodic shows and live programming. Part of Facebook’s philosophy with Watch is to foster content that will engender new community based discussion and interaction — as well as drive up video-viewing time on Facebook and sell premium advertising.

Facebook Watch is a challenging and ambitious attempt to solve a problem that personally and professionally captivates me,” Bidgoli wrote in a Medium post. With more opportunities than ever for creators to distribute content, “Facebook will play a huge part in unlocking this creative energy and connecting creators with their fan communities.”

Separately Monday, Facebook announced the hiring of Matthew Henick, head of the BuzzFeed Studio production group, as head of content planning and strategy, media partnerships.

Bidgoli joined Pinterest in 2016, when the company acquired mobile-discovery commerce app startup Tote, where he was co-founder and CEO. Prior to that, he worked at online marketplace LivingSocial and spent four years at Microsoft working on Hotmail’s safety and anti-spam teams. Prior Bidgoli also is an investor in Tubi TV, a free internet movie and TV streaming service.

In announcing his move to Facebook, Bidgoli expressed gratitude for the two years he spent at Pinterest, thanking founders Ben Silbermann and Evan Sharp and calling them “the most thoughtful and principled founders I have gotten to know.”

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