MNTN Brings on 3 Tech Veterans as Part of Board Development

The company adds Hadi Partovi, Grant Ries and Joe B. Johnson to its board of directors

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Performance TV platform and agency owner MNTN is has brought on three new members to its board of directors as the company continues its rapid growth.

MNTN brought on the board members—Hadi Partovi, Grant Ries and Joe B. Johnson—each boasting different strengths, which is something Mark Douglas, CEO of MNTN did strategically to help the company as it goes through a period of rapid growth.

“Each board member serves a very distinct role with a very distinct background. The way I do my board, it’s almost like I’m filling a specific job,” Douglas told Adweek.

Douglas said that Ries was brought on board due to his expertise in data, tech and SaaS. Ries is CEO and co-owner of marketing data and technology company Deep Sync. He was previously CEO of LiveRamp’s b-to-b arm. Ries serves as an advisor to multiple technology companies, including LiveRamp. In 2018, he joined LiveRamp through the successful acquisition of Pacific Data Partners, a b-to-b data marketplace he co-founded and self-funded. Ries was also co-founder of BlueKai, which was acquired by Oracle.

Partovi is a tech entrepreneur and investor who has been an early advisor to many technology companies, including Facebook and Dropbox. His angel investments include Airbnb, SpaceX, and others, and Douglas brought him on for his connections in the tech industry. Partovi previously ran the MSN portal business for Microsoft, with responsibility for a $1 billion advertising business. Partovi is also the founder and CEO of the nonprofit, which seeks to ensure all students have a chance to study computer science in schools, to address the issue of underrepresentation in the technology field.

Johnson spent 37 years in the accounting profession until his retirement in 2021. He was an audit partner for 28 years and served both public and private companies in various industries, including technology, life sciences, restaurants, healthcare and financial services. 

“We’re at a point where we thought having a board member that that brings more of a finance background also made a lot of sense,” said Douglas.

With the three new members, MNTN’s board now has 10 people in advisory roles on the board.

Rapid growth but no more acquisitions

MNTN has experienced rapid growth and has collected a few companies along the way. In 2021 it bought Ryan Reynolds’ creative agency, Maximum Effort, and last January the ad tech company acquired video creation platform QuickFrame.

Douglas said that MNTN will not be acquiring any more companies in the near future, but it looks to keep growing as it brings new advertisers into the television ecosystem.

“We’re one of the fastest growing companies and in the ad space, and certainly within the television ad space. Now, 74% of our customers are advertisers, or this is the first time they’re advertising on TV. So we continue to bring new companies into the television advertising ecosystem,” said Douglas, adding that the company will be releasing more creative tools to enhance the platform.

Douglas touts MNTN’s value proposition of self-service ads that gives direct to consumer advertisers, especially those new to streaming television, the tools they need to run campaigns. But he also noted that there is a rise in MNTN’s b-to-b consumer base, which currently makes up roughly 20% of the business.

“They they tend to do CRM-based marketing—they know who they want to reach, almost by name, so we have capabilities through data partnerships so they can do CRM targeting,” said Douglas.

With its rapid growth, it might seem that MNTN doesn’t need much self promotion, but there’s a reason the company has Maximum Effort in its universe. A recent campaign, with Jackass stunt entertainer Steve-O eating hot peppers while Reynolds urges him on, was highly effective at explaining MNTN’s self-service platform.

“It definitely brought in a lot of new customers. It’s very funny, but it actually explains how our product works pretty well,” said Douglas, adding that the video improved MNTN’s sales and marketing metrics.

While future promos might not be as crazy as that one, Douglas said that Maximum Effort will continue to produce videos for MNTN.

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