×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Univision Hires News Corp’s Raju Narisetti to Oversee Sites Acquired From Gawker Media

Univision Communications has tapped media and journalism veteran Raju Narisetti as CEO of the newly named Gizmodo Media Group, encompassing the six brands it acquired from Gakwer Media for $135 million in a bankruptcy proceeding.

Narisetti is currently senior VP of strategy at Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp, where he has overseen acquisitions and digital-growth strategy since 2013. He’s set to officially join Univision in late October.

As CEO of Gizmodo Media Group, Narisetti will be responsible for managing all business and editorial operations Gizmodo, Jezebel, Deadspin, Lifehacker, car-culture-focused Jalopnik and gaming destination Kotaku. Narisetti will be based in New York, reporting to Isaac Lee, Univision’s chief news, digital and entertainment officer of UCI, and Felipe Holguin, president and COO of Fusion Media Group (under which the Gizmodo Media Group operates).

Gizmodo Media Group president Heather Detrick, executive editor John Cook, and deputy general counsel Courtenay O’Connor will each report directly to Narisetti.

Univision completed its acquisition of the six Gawker Media sites earlier this month. The deal did not include the flagship Gawker.com site, which ceased publishing in August. Nick Denton’s Gawker Media declared bankruptcy after the company lost a $140 million judgment this spring in Hulk Hogan’s invasion of privacy lawsuit stemming from portions of a sex video with the wrestler posted on Gawker.com. The lawsuit was funded by tech billionaire Peter Thiel, who has had grudge against Gawker over a 2007 article that identified him as gay.

Narisetti, 50, was managing editor of the Wall Street Journal Digital Network prior to his current role at News Corp. He was managing editor of the Washington Post from 2009-12, and before that was founder and editor of India’s Mint business newspaper. Narisetti, born in Hyderabad, India, first joined the Journal in 1991 as an intern, eventually being named editor of the Wall Street Journal Europe and deputy managing editor for the global WSJ.

“Raju is a rare combination, someone who comes with a very strong background in journalism, became a leader in digital media on three continents, and went on to develop new businesses for a global company,” said Lee in a statement. “His commitment to journalistic integrity, his entrepreneurial spirit and proven ability to adapt quickly in a fast-paced digital environment will help us strengthen and grow these newly acquired category-leading brands.”

Prior to closing the deal for the Gawker sites on Sept. 9, Univision angered staffers at the publications after it deleted six posts on Deadspin, Gizmodo and Jezebel citing ongoing litigation stemming from them. The deletions, coming over the strong objections of executive editor John Cook, prompted a protest by the Writers Guild of America East, which represents editorial employees of the former Gawker Media sites. In a memo from Univision’s Lee trying to calm the waters, he said the posts were removed so that the company would “not inherit any risk of liability for pending cases” and that the decision wasn’t a “precedent for the future.”

Narisetti, in a statement provided by Univision, said: “It is a privilege to be responsible for leading this unwaveringly energetic team of journalists and business staff. As part of Univision, we will now be more ambitious in deepening, broadening and sensibly scaling the passionate digital communities that Gizmodo, Jezebel, Deadspin, Kotaku, Jalopnik and Lifehacker have attracted, by offering accurate, responsible, edgy and engaging journalism, as well as through relevant, related content and commerce.”

With the addition of the Gawker Media sites, Univision’s Fusion Media Group now claims to reach 96 million unique visitors. FMG’s brands include Fusion, the Root, Flama, Univision Digital, Univision Music, as well as Univision’s interest in El Rey Network, the Onion, The A.V. Club and ClickHole. FMG also includes Story House, a content development and production unit.

More Digital

  • Murder Mystery

    Netflix Reveals Record-Breaking Stats for Sandler-Aniston 'Murder Mystery' Flick

    “Murder Mystery,” the latest Adam Sandler film to debut on Netflix, broke viewing records on the streaming service, the company revealed Tuesday. The film, which is co-headlined by Jennifer Aniston, was seen by close to 30.9 million households in its first 3 days, according to a tweet sent out Tuesday afternoon. 🚨ADAM SANDLER AND JENNIFER [...]

  • Charles Caldas To Step Down as

    Charles Caldas To Step Down as Merlin CEO

    Charles Caldas, the only CEO that the independent-label collective Merlin has ever known, announced today that he will step down from his post at the end of 2019, after more than 12 years at the helm of the global rights organization. He will continue his current duties until then and work with the Merlin board to [...]

  • Vice Media Digital Makeover Triggers Traffic

    Vice Media Digital Makeover Triggers Traffic Slide

    Life on its own online isn’t easy for Vice Media. Ending the digital publisher’s controversial practice of rolling up web traffic for partner sites into an aggregated number resulted in the total domestic traffic falling nearly by half between March 2019 and the following month, according to Comscore. The numbers improved slightly for May, when [...]

  • Merlin Reports Record Distributions for 2019

    Merlin Reports Record Distributions for 2019

    Global indie-label collective Merlin reported record distributions in its 2019 membership report, paying $845 million to label and distributor members between April 2018 and March of this year. That figure, a 63% year-over-year increase, includes more than $130 million paid out this year from non-royalty income — and included in that figure is the estimated [...]

  • Sarah Iooss - Twitch

    Twitch Hires Sarah Iooss, Former Mic and Viacom Exec, as Head of North America Sales

    Twitch has tapped Sarah Iooss, most recently EVP of revenue at millennial-news startup Mic, to lead the advertising sales team in North America for the Amazon-owned live-streaming video platform focused on video gaming. Iooss will be based in New York, reporting to chief revenue officer Walker Jacobs, who joined Twitch last fall after serving as [...]

  • Calibra app

    Spotify: Facebook's Libra Cryptocurrency Will Help Subscription Services

    When Facebook officially announced its plans for a new cryptocurrency called Libra Tuesday, it also revealed that Spotify was part of a consortium of companies called the Libra Association that is backing the project. The music service hopes that digital money can help subscription services sign up new customers. “One challenge for Spotify and its [...]

  • And Then We Danced

    Swedish Outfit French Quarter Steps Into TV With Graphic Novel Adaptation

    Swedish production company French Quarter, the outfit behind Cannes Directors’ Fortnight entry “And Then We Danced,” is venturing into TV with a web series adapted from Henrik Bromander’s graphic novel “Kurs I självutplåning” (“Course in self-annihilation”). The comedy series has been commissioned by the Swedish broadcaster SVT, as first reported by Nordic Film & TV [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content