The Players' Tribune, the website featuring writing from top professional and college athletes, is getting its first chief executive.
Jeff Levick, a former chief revenue officer at Spotify Ltd., was hired to lead the website which made its initial splash in October 2014, a day after co-founder Derek Jeter retired from the New York Yankees after 20 years as their all-star shortstop. The announcement was made by the site's president, Jaymee Messler, who co-founded The Players' Tribune with Jeter.
During five years at Spotify, Levick oversaw the expansion of its advertising, marketing and digital operations as the music streaming service grew to 58 countries from 12, the Players' Tribune said in an emailed statement. Levick left Spotify in October.
"Fans are looking for authentic athlete-driven content, and in a remarkably short time The Players' Tribune has become the place to find it," Levick said in the statement. "TPT has all of the necessary ingredients to become a global media powerhouse -- from trusted athlete access to premium storytelling."
The hiring comes as The Players' Tribune has become a source for breaking news by giving athletes a chance to tell their stories before traditional sports networks, magazines and newspapers. The website has also stepped up its own operations, building off of early distribution deals with both AOL, where Levick previously worked, and SiriusXM Radio (SIRI) - Get Report . Recent pieces include a piece from Lonzo Ball, a UCLA guard and NBA prospect with an outspoken father, and a farewell letter to Chicago from goaltender Scott Darling on being traded to the NHL's Carolina Hurricanes from the Chicago Blackhawks.
Some of its writers are also investors. The NBA's Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant, Blake Griffin and Andre Iguodala lead a list of roughly 50 athletes who have invested in The Players' Tribune, accounting for about 20% of its funding. Earlier this year, Players' Tribune secured $40 million in funding from a group of venture capital investors including IVP, which is headed by Snap (SNAP) - Get Report founder Evan Spiegel, and GV, an investment arms of Google's parent company, Alphabet (GOOGL) - Get Report .
Before Spotify, Levick was president of global advertising at AOL and held various roles at Alphabet Inc.'s (GOOGL) - Get Report Google, including oversight of management teams for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
"Jeff's expertise in developing monetization strategies through advertising and subscription-based revenue will be invaluable as we continue to diversify our revenue streams," Messler said in the statement. "TPT has aggressive growth plans, and Jeff's proven ability to drive significant revenue, expand globally and scale operations will position us well to accomplish our ambitious goals."
Visit here for the latest business headlines.