Greg Coleman, the former Yahoo ad sales boss who also very briefly took on the same role at AOL, has found a new gig: president of the Huffington Post.
Greg will also be chief revenue officer, which is probably bad news for the HuffPo chief revenue officer James Smith.
New-ish HuffPo CEO Eric Hippeau, a Yahoo (YHOO) board member, knows Greg from his days at that company. BoomTown, which first reported Greg’s new job, suggests Eric played a key role in bringing Greg on-board.
At the Huffington Post, Greg’s challenge will be to help the site become as profitable (not) as it is popular (wildly).
HuffPo claims 21 million uniques and rumours peg its 2009 revenues around $15 million.
What kind of executive has HuffPo landed for itself?
Here’s what we heard about Greg when AOL (TWX) hired him:
- When AOL hired him, one company source called him “Our A-Rod.” Our source described him as “a guy who took Yahoo from $600 million to $6 billion?”
- Not everyone’s a fan. Our source at Google says Greg is the “opposite of [former AOL sales boss Lynda] Clarizio, who’s very smart.” To our source, Greg is just a “big-company, big-staff, stuffed shirt.”
- A former Yahoo exec — one that counts himself a fan of Greg’s — doesn’t reject that view, but he says its besides the point. He says, “I think smarts can be definitely overrated when it comes to sales. Not to say that they’re dumb, but that’s not what separates a great sales person from ther others. You gotta push push and push to close the fucking deal.”
- Greg has a “gold-plated rolodex” and he’s “a real sales guy,” says his old Yahoo colleague. “Greg is the kind of guy that the sales organisation will like. They’ll look to him as one of them who knows what they do. I think he’ll be a popular leader there.”