We reported earlier on the resignation of Jim Spanfeller, CEO of Forbes.com. Steve Forbes, the President and CEO of Forbes, wrote an internal memo (it is being sent to employees tomorrow morning), thanking Spanfeller for his contributions for the last nine years, and mentioning that he will start a new media management company “that will help other traditional media companies make the most of their enormous prospects in digital venues.”
The full memo from Steve Forbes:
To: All Hands
From Steve Forbes
July 16, 2009
Jim Spanfeller, President and CEO of Forbes.com has decided to step down from leading our website after nine years. In the entrepreneurial spirit that Forbes has always championed, Jim will be setting up his own media management company.
Describing his future plans Jim said, The world of media has changed rapidly in the past 10 years and the velocity of the change promises only to increase going forward. Ive had a great run at Forbes and have been deeply involved in the breakthroughs and transformations between traditional and digital media. Now I see a huge opportunity to have my own media management business that will help other traditional media companies make the most of their enormous prospects in digital venues, taking all I have learned here in the past decade and applying on a wider horizon.
Forbes.com has truly been a truly wonderful ride and I am deeply in debt to the Forbes family for letting me be a part of it.
Jim has done a monumental job of bringing Forbes.com to the lead position in business websites, and secured Forbes.com as the must visit site for not only global business leaders but also anyone interested in the finest business reporting and analysis available. At present Forbes.com has 18 million unique visitors a month.
Along the way, Jim has overseen the development and growth of Forbes Digital, which includes Forbes.com, ForbesTraveler.com, Investopedia.com, RealClearPolitics.com, RealClearMarkets.com, Real Clear Sports, and Forbes Business and Finance Blog Network, which together reach 40 million unique visitors a month.
This immense growth on the digital side of the business was spearheaded, pursed, and led by Jim with enormous success. The digital world is still uncharted with few rules, and Jims intellect, creativity, and business acumen helped bring us our number one position. For this the Forbes family is very grateful and we wish him all the success in his future plans.
Since Elevation Partners partnered with Forbes three years ago, Jim has worked very closely with them on the growth and development and vision for Forbes.com. Commenting on Jims departure, Roger McNamee of Elevation said, Jim did a fantastic job leading Forbes.com. In an era when competitors feared it, Jim embraced and evangelized the internet, with huge benefits to Forbes and its audiences. We are grateful for his contributions over the past nine years.
Jim will be staying through a transition period at least through Labor Day.
Please join me and my brothers in wishing Jim all the best in the future, which he deserves.
By Rafat Ali