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Clear Channel Names Pittman Digital Leader

‘There’s no sign that radio listening is declining’

Clear Channel parent CC Media Holdings named Robert Pittman chairman of its media and entertainment platforms.

He’s former chief executive officer of MTV Networks and AOL Networks, and former chief operating officer of America Online and AOL Time Warner. He has invested money in the company and will develop an integrated digital strategy for Clear Channel Radio, it said.

Pittman will maintain his position as founding member of private equity firm Pilot Group, and continue his activities as a venture investor. John Hogan remains president/chief executive officer of Clear Channel Radio.

Clear Channel Chairman and CEO Mark Mays — who has announced plans to step down — stated that Pittman’s “experience and understanding of the broad spectrum of media, Internet and mobile will be a real asset in continuing to build Clear Channel’s core business.” Pittman will work with Hogan to drive efforts to expand digital opportunities and boost Clear Channel’s outreach to major advertising and marketing partners, according to Mays.

Pittman — whose first job was as a radio announcer at age 15 — stated that Clear Channel Radio stations provide “an ideal foundation for growing the core radio business, and expanding those brands and that audience into new services and onto new devices. With a platform this broad and this deep, we have the ability to experiment in ways other companies can’t.”

Pittman told the Wall Street Journal that that, in general, “there’s no sign that radio listening is declining,” noting that digital provides the industry with a growth opportunity. “The challenge is to move really quickly and move aggressively and big.”

Pittman began his career programming radio stations in Pittsburgh and Chicago and worked at the former flagship station of the NBC Radio Network, WNBC(AM) in New York.