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Tumblr’s head of ads steps down as parent Yahoo merges ad operations

Tumblr’s head of ads steps down as parent Yahoo merges ad operations

Tumblr's Lee Brown, speaking last year at a European digital conference

Tumblr's Lee Brown, speaking last year at a European digital conference

Above: Tumblr’s Lee Brown, speaking last year at a European digital conference

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In another sign of Tumblr’s advertising operation merging with parent Yahoo’s, the microblogging service’s global head of brand partnerships is leaving.

Yahoo has confirmed via an email statement the departure of Lee Brown, according to a report in the Bloomberg news service Saturday morning.

“We are aligning the Yahoo and Tumblr sales teams,” the statement said. It added that “bringing the sales teams together will enable us to further deliver the ad solutions that maximize value for our advertisers and best meet their needs.”

Brown has served in that role — Tumblr’s only head of ads — since September of 2012, according to his LinkedIn profile, although the position was originally called Head of Global Sales. That was the year Tumblr first offered ads, following an initial anti-ads position.

Previously, Brown had been senior vice president of national sales at Groupon, where he led the development of a national roster of clients. He held several Yahoo executive positions before that.

Yahoo bought Tumblr in 2013 for $1.1 billion, a major milestone in CEO Marissa Mayer’s efforts to revive the venerable Internet company, in part by a string of acquisitions. Initially, Mayer promised that Tumblr would remain a separate business.

Last month, Yahoo introduced Yahoo Advertising, as part of an overhaul intended to streamline its ad operations and overcome criticism that its ad tech is behind the times. It described the overhaul as “a unified approach to digital advertising that only Yahoo can deliver — across premium and audience-focused display, native and search advertising.”

A simplified buying platform was unveiled. It also renamed its Right Media ad exchange as Yahoo Ad Exchange, and turned its audience-targeting Genome into Yahoo Audience Ads.

Additionally, it announced that in-stream Sponsored Post ads on Tumblr will be called Sponsored Posts Powered by Yahoo Advertising, and that the ads can now be targeted by gender and location.

In June, Yahoo began running Tumblr ads from Sponsored Posts on Yahoo sites.

Tumblr is a micro-blogging platform, built to let users effortlessly share anything. Post text, photos, quotes, links, music, and videos, from your browser, phone, desktop, email, or wherever you happen to be. You can customize everyth… read more »

Yahoo! is the premier digital media company. Founded in 1994 by Stanford PhD candidates David Filo and Jerry Yang as a way for them to keep track of their personal interests on the Internet, Yahoo! has grown into a company that helps p… read more »

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