Sling Recruits Key Players

NEW YORK Sling Media has enlisted two seasoned executives to help broaden the company’s digital entertainment offering.

The execs, Jason Hirschhorn and Benjamin White, become president and CCO, respectively, of Sling Media Entertainment Group, a new division.

Hirschhorn, a former MTV Networks chief digital officer, had most recently been at consultancy Triple H Media Advisors. White had been MTVN’s vp of digital media.

“Jason and Ben are true thought leaders in the digital entertainment space,” said Blake Krikorian, chairman and CEO, Sling Media in San Mateo, Calif.

Sling markets products that allow consumers to gain remote access to TV or DVR content via Web-connected devices such as laptops and mobile phones.

The new unit, based in New York, will forge new applications for these “place-shifting” and “time-shifting” services, as well as manage initiatives with producers, distributors and advertisers.

“Our division will be a liaison with all the different communities to create new ways of engagement with delivery of content,” said Hirschhorn. “We want to work with content distributors, content creators and advertisers all with one thing in mind: what does the audience want?”

Sling’s digital lifestyle applications represent significant opportunities for advertisers, its new executives believe.

“With time-shifting technologies, people are watching more than ever before, so that’s more time to entertain and engage consumers,” said Hirschhorn. “You’re spending more time with your TV programming than when it was in your living room.”

He declined to name companies, but said the new unit is seeking to incorporate agencies and brands in early stages of product development.

“If you look back on the music business in the early days of digital media, it tried to continue a business model that could no longer be supported in a world where the technology let people have unparalleled access and unparalleled control,” Hirschhorn observed. “People don’t want to steal, but they want access to the content.”