Heavy.com Doing Just Fine, Says Founder

heavy.com09.18.08.jpgThe rumors of Heavy.com’s demise are greatly exaggerated. In a phone interview with FishbowlNY.com, the site’s founder Simon Assaad attributed the false information circulating around the Web to two former employees. “A lot of this stems from unhappiness, unfortunately, from those two fellows who didn’t get what they wanted and this is their way to get back at us,” Assaad said before pointing to an article on Mediapost that ran today touting Heavy’s successes.

While the company did recently lose its VP of West Coast sales, he was “pushed out” for poor performance and has since been replaced. Assaad also confirmed that the VP of marketing left after Eric Hadley was brought on above him as CMO. As for the rumors that the VP of East Coast sales left? “That’s not true,” the founder told us, continuing:

“We announced another hire on the East Coast last week, and we haven’t announced it yet, but we just hired another two guys in the last two days. Our regional head in the east is the same guy it’s been since January.”

The lesson, of course, is don’t believe everything that you read on the Internet.

But what about the sales force in the UK. And is the company trying to sell Heavy.com to focus on the ad networks?

“We certainly had some turnover in the UK, not unlike some other companies in other regions, where it’s tough work and people leave, but we just hired two more this week.

We had three reps [in the UK] and two of them left about three or four months ago. We’ve just recently replaced them by hiring a new GM that we haven’t announced yet who’s actually going to run the region. He’s a very senior hire for us.

Our international business has actually been really significant. It’s grown 400 percent this year, between Canada, the UK and Australia, so our international business is actually in a very strong place.”

So with such a strong sales force, could you sell Heavy.com and focus on the advertising network?

“I’m not really sure where those came from but I can tell you that our space is very crowded. There are a lot of investors in the other companies that are in our space that are constantly talking to both us and our investors about consolidation. That’s what VCs do. Some of that has been either mistaken for or used poorly as a way to indicate [we’re] trying to sell Heavy, which doesn’t really make any sense. If you were to drill down to the financials, what you would find is that we are actually twice as big is our nearest competitors [Break.com and Ripe.com]. The more likely scenario, the one that’s actually been happening, is those investors calling us and saying, ‘Hey, how about you take over these businesses and we consolidate the space together.’ It’s actually the other way.”