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ValueClick Chooses New Chief

Tom Vadnais replaces James Zarley as CEO.
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ValueClick (VCLK) named Tom A. Vadnais chief executive, replacing James R. Zarley, who becomes executive chairman after 8 years in the top job.

The online ad firm said Wednesday that Vadnais was recently president of U.S. operations and has been on the company's board since 2001.

Zarley, in his new role, will focus on strategic direction and "gradual management transition" of operations.

Shares of ValueClick have jumped by more than 20% in just the past three weeks as traders speculate that the company may be the next target in the recent flurry of buyouts of online ad companies.

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ValueClick closed Wednesday up 44 cents, or 1.3%, to $33.44.