August 23, 2010
Nextag Announces Senior Hires and Global P&L Team to Fulfill Aggressive Growth PlansManagement Team Focused on International Growth, Expanded Service Features and Talent Acquisition
SAN MATEO, Calif., August 23, 2010 Nextag, (Nextag.com), a leading comparison shopping website for products and services, today announced three new senior hires and a global P&L team to more effectively leverage the company’s significant strengths and position it for future growth. In an economic environment where many companies are reluctant to make significant hires or acquisitions, Nextag is defying market trends, as exemplified by these executive appointments and last month’s acquisition of online product recommendation engine, Wize. To accommodate this growth, the company is also poised to move to new, larger offices in San Mateo early next year.
“We’re moving aggressively to fulfill Nextag’s mission to be an indispensible shopping resource for consumers as well as a value-added marketing partner for merchants and manufacturers,” said Jeffrey G. Katz, Chief Executive Officer of Nextag. “Our strategy for meeting these goals includes international growth, new service features and top-tier talent to execute our vision. These new hires provide energy and fresh perspective necessary to help us seize the major opportunities we see ahead for the comparison shopping category; equally importantly, our existing senior managers provide stability and deep domain expertise to ensure that we continue to maximize the core strengths which have been integral to our success and profitability for more than a decade.”
New Executive Hires
Nextag today announced the addition of Brian Regan, Chief Financial Officer; Bahman Koohestani, Chief Technology Officer; and Shea Kelly, Senior Vice President of Human Resources. The addition of these executives, all of whom boast decades of experience from marquee companies, is validation of Nextag’s commitment to attracting top-tier talent. All three of the new senior executives will report directly to CEO, Jeffrey G. Katz, who joined Nextag as Chief Executive Officer in March from his post as Chairman, President and CEO of LeapFrog Enterprises, Inc.
About Brian Regan, Chief Financial Officer
Brian Regan, Chief Financial Officer of Nextag, is a seasoned professional in the financial arena whose strong track record will be vital in helping Nextag achieve its earnings growth targets over the next two years. Regan has held financial positions at several high-profile companies, including his most recent role as Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Ticketmaster Entertainment, where he led Ticketmaster’s global financial operations as a public company prior to its merger with Live Nation Entertainment. Regan also held finance leadership positions at Expedia, Inc. where he last served as Senior Vice President of Finance for its North American businesses, including Expedia.com, Hotels.com, and Hotwire. He also held a variety of financial roles at LendingTree, from its start-up phase through its initial public offering and eventual sale to IAC. Regan began his career at PricewaterhouseCoopers, and he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and Accounting from Bucknell University.
About Bahman Koohestani, Chief Technology Officer
In his role as Chief Technology Officer, Bahman Koohestani will lead all aspects of technology and product delivery, architecture and scalability, striving to apply technology as a key strategic and competitive differentiator at Nextag. Koohestani is a Silicon Valley technology luminary who joined Nextag from PayPal, where he was Vice President of Product Development, a global role which encompassed all PayPal merchant and consumer product development. He was also Chief Technology Officer at social network, Cyworld, where he was instrumental in shaping their global strategy to connect and attract a social community of over 40 million members worldwide. Koohestani has served as the CIO/CTO of Orbitz Worldwide, and he co-founded and took public Delano Technology, a leader in CRM platform and applications. Koohestani was also Vice President, Messaging Technology at Netscape, where he was instrumental in leading the messaging product vision and scaling the organization. Koohestani graduated from York University with a B.Sc. in Computer Science.
About Shea Kelly, Senior Vice President, Human Resources
Shea Kelly recently joined Nextag as Senior Vice President, Human Resources, where she will spearhead talent acquisition and organization development. Prior to Nextag, Kelly was Executive Development Director at Juniper Networks, and before that, she was Vice President, Global Leadership Capability at Hewlett-Packard, with responsibility for strategic and operational plans for corporate succession planning, executive assessment, and leadership development. Prior to HP, Kelly served as Vice President of Human Resources for Actelion Pharmaceuticals, a global entity headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, and she also served as head of HR for Yodlee, Inc., a privately held software company. A graduate of the GE Human Resources Management Program, her experience continued over the next eight years with GE and Thomson Multimedia, and subsequently two years with Citicorp. Kelly holds an M.S. in Organizational Psychology from Purdue University, and a B.S. in Psychology and Human Development from the University of Connecticut.
New Global P&L Executives
Nextag today also announced that three long-tenured, senior executives are taking on global P&L responsibility to better execute on key strategic initiatives, including global expansion; investing in new vertical markets; and expanding upon consumer trends such as mobile applications, personalization features and the integration of social commerce.
Scott Simmons, President, North America
Scott Simmons has been appointed to the role of President of North America, where he will be responsible for operations and helping to elevate brand awareness of Nextag among consumers and merchants through growth in the areas of mobile shopping, social media and personalization. Scott has been with Nextag for 10 years, serving in a variety of roles beginning with Vice President of Finance and extending to Vice President of Business Development; Vice President and General Manager, Services Shopping; and President of Nextag. Prior to his tenure at Nextag, Simmons held a variety of financial positions with Real Time Data, a wireless data application company and he was an investment analyst with Prudential Investment Corporation. Simmons received his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and his Bachelor of Chemical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Mark A. Bradley, President International
Mark Bradley has been appointed as President, International, to strengthen and build the company’s businesses Worldwide, including Europe, Asia- Pacific and South America. Bradley started the company with its two founders in May of 1999 and has served Nextag in a variety of roles for more than 11 years, starting with his initial position as Vice President of Sales and Customer Service and extending to Vice President and General Manager, Product Shopping; Sr. Vice President, Product Shopping, Operations and India; and Sr. Vice President Product Management, Advertising and Sales (Product Shopping, Mortgage, Education and Travel businesses) and has also been instrumental in starting and managing many new businesses in the Financial Services Sector, Travel and Education verticals. Prior to joining Nextag, Bradley worked within the Technology Sector for over 10 years, where he held several executive positions at public companies in Marketing, Product Management and Business Development. Bradley graduated from Southern Methodist University with an undergraduate Business Degree in Finance (B.B.A.).
H. Claire Hough, President, New Vertical Markets.
Claire Hough is charged with managing and growing profitability of Nextag’s existing vertical markets, such as travel, education and consumer products, and identifying and building new verticals. She joined Nextag in 2004 as Vice President, Product Management, and she has also held other positions within the company, including Vice President, General Manager of Product Shopping; Senior Vice President, Engineering; and Senior Vice President, Engineering, Operations and India. Prior to joining Nextag, Hough held a variety of senior positions at notable technology companies, such as Blue Martini, Napster, Netscape and the ASK Group. Hough received both her M.S. and B.S. in Operations Research from the University of California, Berkeley.
Nextag® is the leading comparison shopping site for products, education, financial services, travel, and more. At the core of Nextag® are proprietary technologies and algorithms that enable shoppers to quickly compare prices and find great deals on millions of products and services. More than 30 million people per month use Nextag® to research, compare, and save on products and services online.
Nextag® has been named one of the "50 Best Websites 2008" by TIME magazine. The company operates comparison shopping sites in the US (Nextag.com), the UK (Nextag.co.uk), France (Nextag.fr), Germany (Nextag.de), Spain (Nextag.es), Italy (Nextag.it), Australia (Nextag.com.au) and Japan (Nextag.co.jp). Nextag® is headquartered in San Mateo, California with offices in London, Tokyo and Gurgaon, India.