Pandora’s First CMO Is Leaving the Company, the Latest in a String of Leadership Changes

Simon Fleming-Wood steps down

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After joining Pandora in 2011 as the company's first chief marketing officer, Simon Fleming-Wood is stepping down from the role.

The move comes on the heels of last week's news that founder Tim Westergren was replacing Brian McAndrews as CEO. Additionally, Sara Clemens was elevated from chief strategy officer to chief operating officer, and Mike Herring took on the role of president in addition to his position as chief financial officer.

"I'm wrapping things up at Pandora now and will then take a short break," Fleming-Wood said. "After that, I'll be excited to tackle the next great opportunity in my career."

According to a source, Pandora is looking to hire a new CMO who will report to chief product officer Chris Phillips.

The leadership changes are part of Pandora's push to move beyond online radio and into on-demand listening to compete with Apple Music, Spotify and others. The company has 80 million monthly listeners and is working to create an on-demand library of music. Pandora acquired music-streaming service Rdio last year.

"As our first CMO, Simon led the development of Pandora's strong consumer brand while assembling an outstanding team from the ground up," Westergren said. "I wish him all the best."

Fleming-Wood's work for Pandora includes the "That's My Shit" campaign from earlier this year, last year's "The Next Song Matters" and 2014's "Thumb Moments."

Before joining Pandora, Fleming-Wood worked at Pure Digital Technologies, the Flip Video camera maker. After Pure Digital was acquired by Cisco, Fleming-Wood worked as vp of marketing for the Cisco Consumer Products Group. He's also held positions at Sega, The Clorox Company and Mattel.

Below is the memo Fleming-Wood sent to Pandora employees Sunday:


As you have likely heard, I am stepping down as CMO and soon leaving Pandora.

I was inspired to join Pandora in 2011 because the company delivered on everything I wanted in a job—a product that mattered to the world, smart people I liked and respected, and the opportunity to have an impact in a company that cared about winning but also doing things the right way. As I have told every class that has come through Pandora U since, Pandora has been all this to me and more.

We've done incredible things together over the last four and half years. Among them, we've built this remarkable company from 300 to over 2,000 people, grown our audience from 11 million daily listeners to over 28 million, and made a difference in people's lives by connecting them to the music that matters to them. My crowning achievement, however, is the team of marketing, communications, and BD professionals that I have had the honor to build and lead.

I loved music when I joined Pandora, but I have come to see it as so much more. I know now that music gives voice where words fail. It unlocks emotion and memories that otherwise remain dormant. And it inspires us to be strong by letting us know we are not alone. Music connects us to our humanity in a way nothing else can. That is why the next song truly matters, and always will.

I look forward to watching you all carry Pandora forward on its noble quest. I will most likely be listening to my Radiohead station.

My best,


@laurenjohnson Lauren Johnson is a senior technology editor for Adweek, where she specializes in covering mobile, social platforms and emerging tech.