In an email to staff obtained by Variety, Valence Media co-CEOs Asif Satchu and Modi Wiczyk wrote that “the search process for THR/Billboard’s next CEO has already started. … Thanks for your patience, attention and commitment during this transition. ” Valence is parent company to THR, Billboard, Media Rights Capital, Dick Clark Productions and film studio A24.
Amato joined the company in 2014 following stints as chief executive at Backstage and Sonicbids, both former properties alongside trade magazines Billboard and THR. He was the chief architect in launching the Billboard Hot 100 Music Festival, which is scheduled for August 18 and 19 in Jones Beach, New York, and also played a key role in the company’s acquisition of music websites Spin, Vibe and Stereogum in Dec. 2016. At the time, Amato boasted that the group “will be able to fully capture the value of millennials and music, and continue to strengthen its leadership position in this critical arena.”
According to reports, the New York-based Amato was being investigated for influencing newsroom procedures — specifically, axing a feature story on former Republic Records Group president and “The Four” judge Charlie Walk, who was relieved of both positions following accusations of sexual harassment. A source says the investigation into Amato’s practices has been ongoing and culminated in action this week.