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Steve Sternberg Out at Magna

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Steve Sternberg, a 27-year Interpublic veteran and one of the more widely respected and oft-quoted TV research executives on Madison Avenue is out, effective July 15, the company has confirmed.

Most recently Sternberg was evp audience analysis at IPG’s research and marketplace intelligence unit, Magna, which has been undergoing a transformation over the past year.

Last September IPG hired Elizabeth Herbst-Brady to run the unit as president with a mandate to reshape its focus.

At the time of the hire, Mediabrands CEO Nick Brien said that Herbst-brady, “recognizes the emerging patterns of the future of the media business and will be able to harness it for our clients. She [will] lead them in the next stage of the company’s evolution as a marketing intelligence and emerging technologies specialist.”

The departure of Sternberg is apparently a part of Magna’s ongoing evolution. Commenting on the departure in a statement, Herbst-Brady  said: “After conversations with Steve about Magna's new direction, we both agreed that both his professional interests and Magna’s business needs did not align. Therefore, Steve is leaving Magna effective immediately to pursue other opportunities.”

Herbst-Brady added that “the new Magna structure will now fold audience analysis into our broadbased data analytics, tools and macro-economic trending activities.”

Sternberg’s two direct reports, Lisa Quan, vp, director of Audience Analysis and Brian Hughes, vp, manager of Audience Analysis will now report to Herbst-Brady.

The Sternberg announcement was the second piece of news emerging from Magna today.

MgaEarlier the shop said it would completely overhaul the annual spending forecasts it typically make twice a year focusing more on media company advertising revenues and not gross advertiser expenditures. Brian Wieser, who replaced Robert Coen as the company’s chief forecaster in March, will present the first of the newly formatted forecasts on Monday.