Twitter Hires Head of Live Video

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Todd Swidler, who previously ran video gaming platform ESC Games, is joining Twitter as global head of live video business.

Twitter has tapped an experienced media executive to help it ramp up its live video efforts. 

The social network has hired Todd Swidler, who led video at Bloomberg for several years, as its first global head of live video business. COO Anthony Noto, who has championed Twitter's push into video, announced the hire Monday on Twitter. 

Twitter began offering live video to its users last year through a deal with the NFL to stream part of its Thursday Night Football package. That deal has since ended — and the NFL has instead inked a streaming deal with Amazon — but Twitter has continued to add new live video partnerships. During the election, it live-streamed a number of debates, and at its first-ever NewFronts presentation earlier this month it unveiled a slate of live-streaming programming, from a 24/7 sports channel to a daily live show hosted by comedian Phoebe Robinson. 

During the first quarter of this year, Twitter has streamed more than 800 hours of live video, which has drawn a combined 45 million unique visitors worldwide. 

It will be Swidler's job to oversee the business side of these efforts, including working with the product, marketing, sales and content partnerships teams. He will report directly to Noto.

Prior to joining Twitter, Swidler was CEO of ESC Games, which had developed a platform for casual gaming and e-sports style competitions. He previously served as a senior vice president at Bloomberg, where he launched the business publication's digital video business and oversaw video distribution and partnerships. His résumé also includes time at the NBA and Cablevision. 

 

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