Ed Olkkola has joined Belo Corp. (NYSE: BLC) as vice president of business development. He most recently was a managing director with STARTech Early Ventures and, before that, spent nine years with Austin Ventures.
Belo Corp. (NYSE: BLC) announced today that it has named Edward E. (Ed) Olkkola senior vice president/Business Development. Olkkola will be responsible for driving Belo's strategic investments, developing an enterprise-wide product innovation process and creating partnerships with companies whose aligned business models and technologies can lead to the creation of new audience and business opportunities. He will report to Donald F. (Skip) Cass, Jr., Belo's executive vice president.
Olkkola joins Belo after having held senior positions in venture capital and corporate business development, both in technology-based industries. He most recently served as managing director of STARTech Early Ventures, a seed and early-stage venture capital firm. From 1998 until 2007, he served as a general partner and operating partner at Austin Ventures, one of the country's leading venture capital firms. During his tenure in venture capital, Olkkola was responsible for launching more than 20 new companies. Prior to joining Austin Ventures, Olkkola served in a number of capacities for Compaq Computer from 1993 until 1998 including vice president/Strategic Technology Planning and director/Business Development where he lead the acquisition of several companies, and co-founded the Compaq Venture Fund. Olkkola held similar positions with Motorola Information Systems from 1983 until 1993 including senior project manager and director/Business Development.
“Belo's commitment to creating new business models and deploying associated technologies and products requires proven leadership and experience,” said Cass. “Ed's background in funding and launching start-up ventures, coupled with his experience in corporate development, will prove invaluable in guiding Belo's assessment, prioritization and implementation of new business, partnership and product development initiatives that align best with the Company's strategic interests.”
“Belo already possesses what many new companies strive for: trusted brands and content, experienced sales forces, and a platform from which to reach large numbers of consumers,” commented Olkkola. “As technology continues to improve and distribution channels become less costly and ubiquitous, local media companies such as Belo will find themselves in an increasingly beneficial position to leverage existing strengths against new business models, partnerships and technologies. I am pleased to be joining Belo in what promises to be a very exciting time and believe there is considerable opportunity ahead.”
Following the completion of Belo's plan to spin off its newspaper businesses and related assets announced earlier this year, the business development function will move to the publishing company, A. H. Belo Corporation. However, Olkkola will continue to pursue business development and digital business opportunities for both companies, A. H. Belo Corporation and Belo Corp., after the spin off.
Belo Corp. is one of the nation's largest media companies with a diversified group of market-leading television, newspaper, cable and interactive media assets. A Fortune 1000 company with 7,000 employees and more than $1.6 billion in annual revenues, Belo operates in some of America's most dynamic markets in Texas, the Northwest, the Southwest, the Mid-Atlantic and Rhode Island. Belo owns 20 television stations, six of which are in the 15 largest U.S. broadcast markets. The Company also owns or operates six cable news stations and manages one television station through a local marketing agreement. Belo's daily newspapers are The Dallas Morning News, The Providence Journal, The Press-Enterprise (Riverside, CA) and the Denton Record-Chronicle (Denton, TX). The Company also publishes specialty publications targeting young adults, and the fast-growing Hispanic market, including Quick and Al Dia in Dallas/Fort Worth, and El D and La Prensa in Riverside. Belo operates more than 30 Web sites associated with its operating companies. Additional information is available at http://www.belo.com.