Tag Archive: sales


Jimmy Pitaro

Jimmy Pitaro

Earlier today, Disney said what is likely not much of a shock to anyone – that it was handing over the reins of its interactive division to one of its two co-presidents, Jimmy Pitaro.

That means John Pleasants, who was the other co-president and was located in Silicon Valley, is leaving the kingdom, merging the games and media units under one leader in Los Angeles. Pleasants, as happens in these kinds of things, will be a strategic consultant to Disney Interactive.

The reorganization of the unit comes three years after Pitaro, a former Yahoo media exec, and Pleasants, who came to Disney via its acquisition of Playdom, were paired. Disney Interactive recently reported its second quarterly profit of $16 million on sales of $396 million, in what has been an uphill effort over the past decade for the entertainment giant.

Under the regime of former CEO Michael Eisner – many digital moons ago and which I covered since I am so dang old – Disney bought search engine Infoseek and tried to create a portal called Go.com. That failed, and was one of many efforts to define the media company’s Web goals. More recently, in 2008, Disney gathered most of its Internet properties under Steve Wadsworth.

Then came the pairing of Pitaro and Pleasants. And now, just Pitaro.

Disney said it “will move forward with a singular strategy for driving revenue and advertising across key platforms and franchises,” such as Disney Infinity – a big Pleasants project – and Club Penguin.

blackBerry-pinata

For a smartphone maker whose turnaround effort hasn’t quite gone as planned, forcing it into a strategic review of its business options, even the small victories are cause for celebration.

No surprise, then, that BlackBerry today issued a press release touting a small order for its new Q10 smartphone. Evidently, Hispanic broadcaster Univision Communications has agreed to purchase 2,000 units of the keyboarded handset, which it will use to upgrade all corporate-issued BlackBerrys.

Hardly a large order. Indeed, it’s woefully small compared to the purchases BlackBerry typically touts via press release. Recall that, back in March, the company announced a one-million-handset deal.

Which is not to say that smaller handset orders like these aren’t victories. Just that BlackBerry’s announcement of it on its own is curious. If the company is having trouble landing big enterprise orders for its new handsets, its best hope is to score lots and lots of smaller ones. That a pioneering smartphone vendor of BlackBerry’s size and history announced this small Univision buy on its own today suggests that perhaps the company is having trouble landing those smaller orders, as well. And that’s not a good sign.

If BlackBerry is landing larger enterprise engagements, where are the announcements? If it’s racking up smaller buys, why weren’t those noted along with Univision adding more heft to today’s press release?

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