About Rob Barrett
Rob Barrett Advisor
Rob Barrett is a growth-focused digital media, product, and commerce leader with a record of transforming media businesses from legacy operations into future-focused organizations, and current President, Media for Arena Group in addition to advising Visionary Future. Rob has specific experience integrating artificial intelligence into media and newsroom operations, having led multiple change initiatives in this area. He has been a serial “intrapreneur” as the digital leader at Yahoo News and Yahoo Finance, Hearst Newspapers, TIME, ABC News and The Los Angeles Times — building, re-engineering and growing their digital operations and market strategies to meet the full opportunities in distributed publishing, advertising, subscription and increasingly important affiliate commerce, direct-to-consumer and social channels. Rob is currently President of Arena Media Brands, operating a $250M P&L for 265 media brands including Sports Illustrated, TheStreet, Parade and Men’s Journal. Since 2001, he has driven 500% revenue growth for the company, moved SI.com to #2 in Sports, TheStreet.com into the #6 in Finance and the Parade Group in #8 in Lifestyle (U.S. audiences), ahead of larger competitors. He also steered these brands to successful outcomes in e-commerce, the creator economy, and AI-assisted content creation and business efficiencies. Prior to Arena, Rob saw 300% growth in digital subscriptions as President, Digital for Hearst Newspapers, with ground-up martech infrastructure, metrics-driven content investment and audience channel development. A graduate of Duke University and Harvard’s Kennedy School, Rob began his career as a newspaper journalist and quickly became an early mover in internet media, establishing the digital newsrooms and product operations for TIME and ABC News. He now often advises CEOs, CIOs and other senior executives who are reimagining their organizations to meet rising opportunities in and beyond the media sector.
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