Nine’s chief digital officer Alex Parsons departs, Hugh Marks reveals staff updates

Hugh Marks: “We will not seek to replace Alex’s role directly”

Alex Parsons

Nine Entertainment Co’s chief digital officer Alex Parsons has announced he is leaving the business after a three-year tenure leading Nine’s digital operations.

Nine CEO Hugh Marks said: “Alex has made an enormous contribution to the growth and evolution of the Nine business. He has successfully evolved Nine Digital from the business built around the long-term Microsoft joint venture arrangement to the growing content and platform business it is today. I would like to thank him for his time and energy.”

In an email sent to Nine staff, Marks remarked:  “We will not seek to replace Alex’s role directly but instead recognise the importance of the components of what is currently known as 9Digital as the foundations of our overall future business.”

Parsons’ decision comes after more than a decade with Nine, where he has held various senior roles and has driven significant growth in digital revenue and earnings.

“After an amazing experience working with the most passionate media folks in Australia here at Nine it’s time for a new challenge,” said Parsons.

“I’m immensely proud of everything my team has achieved, particularly in getting back to the top of the commercial news rankings, launching the 9Honey women’s network, launching 9Now and developing our data asset, which now has more than four million subscribers.

“I’m confident that I’m leaving the digital business in good shape and that it will continue to be a key player in the Australian digital landscape for years to come.”

In the internal email, Marks also revealed a number of staff updates, including:

Niamh Collins as General Manager of Video including 9Now will now report into Michael Healey as Director of Television, ensuring the seamless acquisition of rights, the continued promotion of 9Now across the whole business and setting it up for key investment into the future.

• Helen McCabe will move from Head of Lifestyle to the role of Digital Content Director reporting to me. Helen and her team have done a stellar job building out 9Honey in less than a year to have more than 1.9m Australians reading it each month. There is a lot more to this journey into the future.

• Anna Quinn will move to report into Helen continuing the impressive work driving great audience volumes and helping us package and commercialise those audiences with our sales teams.

• Christiaan Rutten will move from his current title of Director of Business Strategy and Operations to Digital Chief Operating Officer and will report to Greg Barnes. Christiaan’s existing responsibilities will all be retained but he will now increase his focus on revenue, expenses and ultimately earnings across the digital business to ensure these continue to exceed our expectations.

• Roxanne Hoad will move to report into Christiaan and continue to drive the audience and product for our digital publishing network, which enables us to hit our targets across both audience volumes and ad inventory.

• Mat Yelavich will also report in Greg and continue to drive all technology aspects of our business forward. There has been great progress across our technology and systems such as 9Galaxy, 9Now and our data capability and we are keen to further accelerate in this space as our application of technology continues to be a strong differentiator.

Parsons will leave the business at the end of the month. His duties in the short term will be assumed by existing managers across the business.


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