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Former Yahoo and Microsoft executive Blake Irving has been named CEO of controversial web hosting company Go Daddy.Most recently, Irving led products for Yahoo. He left in April, when Scott Thompson was CEO. Thompson fired 2,000 people, many of whom worked in Irving’s division.
Go Daddy was a private, controversial company for a long time. Its former CEO videotaped himself killing an elephant. It supported SOPA, the bill that everyone on the Internet hated. And then there’s those Super Bowl ads featuring Danica Patrick and top heavy ladies.
That’s probably changing now. Not just because of Irving. Go Daddy was sold for $2 billion to an investment group last year. That investment group will either want to take Go Daddy public or sell it for more than $2 billion to someone else.We’re scheduled to talk to Irving about his new role, which seems like a big departure from running products at Yahoo. We’ll have more on that later.
In the meanwhile, here’s the release:
GO DADDY APPOINTS BLAKE IRVING AS CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
Technology Veteran Brings Product Development Focus to Go Daddy
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. (Dec. 11, 2012) – Go Daddy, the world’s largest provider of Web hosting, domain name registrations and new SSL Certificates, today announced Blake Irving, formerly a long time Microsoft executive and Chief Product Officer of Yahoo! Incorporated (“Yahoo”), will assume the role of Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”), effective January 7, 2013. Irving will succeed Scott Wagner, a Member of KKR who has been serving as interim CEO since July.
“Go Daddy, the industry leader of Web hosting solutions for small and medium businesses, is poised for a promising future,” said Go Daddy Executive Chairman and Founder Bob Parsons. “Blake Irving’s deep technology experience and his history of developing new cutting-edge products and leading large global teams make him an enormously compelling choice to drive Go Daddy to the next level of its domestic and global growth. Go Daddy has made great strides with Scott Wagner as CEO, and we look forward to building on that in the future.”
Go Daddy has recently been expanding its market-leading products to support its nearly 11 million customers, mostly small business customers both domestically and internationally. This summer, Go Daddy acquired Outright.com, a cloud-based financial management application and the company also formed a partnership with DudaMobile to launch mobile Website Builder, a service that automates the integration of Web and mobile sites to save businesses time and expand their customer reach.
“I’m honored for the opportunity to lead such a talented team and to be a part of such an innovative company,” Blake Irving said. “Go Daddy is and will continue to be the hub where businesses can come to life, grow and prosper. We strive to be the global resource that fuels success for countless entrepreneurs and innovators around the world. As a long time Go Daddy customer, I have seen firsthand an organisation that is committed to its customers 24 hours a day and seven days a week and yet there still remains much more we can do to enhance the customer experience. This is a fantastic opportunity, and I can’t wait to hit the ground running in January.”
“Go Daddy is fortunate to have Blake Irving join the team for the next chapter in his long time career as an innovator,” said Scott Wagner, Go Daddy’s Interim CEO. “I’m thrilled for Blake and I am thrilled for Go Daddy. We have good momentum on product and our international growth and having someone with Blake’s talent and character lead the company will only accelerate it.”
About Blake Irving
Blake Irving has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of Go Daddy, effective January 7, 2013, and will also join the Go Daddy Board of Directors.
Irving most recently served as Chief Product Officer at Yahoo! Incorporated, where he developed and rolled out the unified product vision and strategy – growing the company to nearly one billion active PC and mobile users. Prior to Yahoo, he spent 15 years at Microsoft, serving in various senior roles, most recently as Corporate Vice President of the Windows Live Platform. While at Microsoft, Irving was responsible for creating and leading a global development and operations organisation of more than 4,000 employees in the creation and operation of Microsoft’s global online services, launching several new products, including MSN Messenger and growing Hotmail from 7 million to 290 million users.
Mr. Irving currently serves on the Board of GolfLogix, a Scottsdale, Ariz.-based mobile Web company. He has also served as a professor at Pepperdine University. He is a graduate of San Diego State and received an MBA degree from Pepperdine University.
To find out more about how to get online easily and affordably, visit www.GoDaddy.com.