Guggenheim Digital Media executive VP Zander Lurie, hired a year ago by CEO Ross Levinsohn to pursue media deals, confirmed that he is leaving the company.
Lurie, formerly CBS’s senior VP of strategic development, said in an email that he is departing, after reports Tuesday about his exit on Deadline.com and Re/code. “All good. Just off to pursue a couple other opportunities,” he wrote, declining to provide details on what he plans to do next. A rep for Guggenheim Partners declined to comment.
Guggenheim had been among the bidders for Hulu, the joint venture of Disney, 21st Century Fox and NBCUniversal — and Lurie had been interested in having a hand in running the company, according to a source familiar with the situation. But at the end of the sales process the parent companies decided to retain Hulu, and that may have been a big reason Lurie decided to move on.
The departure of Lurie comes as Guggenheim Partners has shifted the duties of Levinsohn — the former CEO of Yahoo — to a pure business-development role and remove him from managing the company’s trade publications, which include the Hollywood Reporter and Billboard. Last week Guggenheim Partners said it was splitting Prometheus Global Media, the publishing company it acquired from Jimmy Finkelstein’s Pluribus Capital, into two separate operating entities: one that merges THR and Billboard and the other comprising Adweek, the Clio Awards and Film Expo Group.
Separately, in November, Guggenheim Digital Media senior VP of strategy and operations Michel Protti left to join Facebook as director of emerging business. Levinsohn had hired Protti about a year ago.