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Jimmy Maymann

  • Programme: Executive MBA London
  • Nationality: Danish
  • Job Pre-programme: Director, Leo Burnett
  • Job Post-programme: Executive Vice President and President, AOL Content & Consumer Brands

Professional background

Jimmy completed the Executive MBA in 2005. He is the founder of Neo Ideo and GoViral and the CEO of the Huffington Post.

Driven by ambition

My career started off distinctly different as a professional handball player in Denmark. Though by the age of 25, I decided to bring my sporting journey to a halt and move towards an entrepreneurial career path. My ambition and drive has seen me achieve both my sporting and career goals.

Developing critical skills

During my five years at Leo Burnett, I completed the Executive MBA at London Business School. The EMBA was a totally different experience in a very good way. The way you work with cases and the way you apply the tools is an eye-opener and extremely useful. The significant value gained was in discovering the fundamental dynamics of my character. I am very good at deciding where to spend and focus my time. The programme ran alongside my job and family and with such a huge workload, you really have to create a plan and laser focus on the things that really matter. You can’t do it all, you have to prioritise. Developing these critical skills equipped me to progress into the next stage of my career.

The Executive MBA at London Business School reignited my entrepreneurial spirit. I went on to create GoViral in anticipation of videos becoming the main online advertising medium. Five years after its creation I was approached by AOL and although I was not intending on selling at that point in time, in light of the offer the internal decision was to go ahead with the deal.

Making an impact

A week after acquiring GoViral, AOL purchased the Huffington Post. Tim Armstrong, CEO of AOL and Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post asked me to look at how the organisation on the whole could develop internationally. As a task drawing upon what I do best – ‘building things’, I developed a plan identifying the Huffington Post as the first brand to roll out with the strategy. Appointed as the new CEO of the Huffington Post, my goal is to make a difference and do something that will create change.

I am currently in the process of executing the Huffington Post strategy, focusing on three main elements – to open in new markets, to develop video content and to develop ‘verticals’.

For me it is really not about the money; it’s about that challenge, that is what gets me up in the morning. The only thing I want to do is build great things and I would like to be the one that helps the Huffington Post to become a global media brand.