Wells Fargo Securities analyst Marci Ryvicker has Clear Channel Outdoor in her portfolio of company’s she follows, so she had a great interest in who would be selected as CEO of the parent company, CC Media Holdings. She is giving a thumbs-up to the elevation of Bob Pittman to the post.
“This is not a surprise and a great move,” Ryvicker said Monday (10/3) in a note to clients.
“Mr. Pittman joined Clear Channel in November 2010 as both an investor and as Chairman of Media and Entertainment platforms and has been very vocal about his belief in not just Clear Channel but also the entire radio industry. It is our understanding that Mr. Pittman has been instrumental in transforming Clear Channel into more of a digital power house and was the ‘brains’ behind the new iHeartradio as well as the company’s purchase of Thumbplay in May. Given Mr. Pittman’s involvement in Clear Channel thus far, we were not surprised by yesterday’s announcement and view this as a positive for several reasons,” the analyst said, then listed three.
1) “This announcement is another signal that Mr. Pittman ‘likes what he sees’ at Clear Channel.
2) The radio industry now has a very strong leader who is willing to effect change and talk to Wall Street.
3) While we view this announcement as more of a direct positive for Clear Channel’s radio division, the fact of the matter is that the more stability there is at the parent company, the better it is for CCO. We have not spoken to the company but would anticipate that current CEO(s) Ron Cooper [(Americas) and William Eccleshare (International) will continue to manage the operations as they see fit; and so far (in our view), both have done a superior job.”
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