Infogroup hires execs to bolster client data services

Infogroup has hired Christian Ward as SVP and head of data strategy, analytics and capabilities. The Omaha, Neb.-based company has also named Dana Hayman VP of marketing strategy and insights.

Ward will be responsible for developing and executing Infogroup’s data and data-as-a-service strategies. He will oversee a team of six employees and report to Infogroup chief product officer Gemma Postlethwaite.

“Having someone who has experience around big data who can help the customers synthesize what that data means and how we build a strategy around it is critical,” said Clare Hart, CEO of Infogroup.

Ward most recently served as global head of content innovation at Thomson Reuters, where he was responsible for content and platform solutions across the company’s investment and advisory businesses. He also founded data companies Jaywalk Incorporated and Ockham Research. Jaywalk was acquired by The Bank of New York and Ockham was bought by xRM Global, a multi-national relationship management firm.

Hart said Ward’s financial services background will be complimentary to Infogroup’s work.

“We wanted someone who had intense data background, management and strategy experience. We weren’t exclusively looking at marketing services,” she said. “The financial services industry is a nice match because it has massive amounts of data, real-time data, and algorithms and technology [built] around that data.”

Hayman will work with Infogroup clients to identify marketing opportunities and architect data-driven marketing strategies. He will also develop professional services offerings and capabilities. Hayman will join the company’s client experience team and report to Ward for the time being, said Hart.

Infogroup is refining the client experience team’s strategy, organization and executive recruitment. Once completed, the company will determine who Hayman will report to permanently, said Hart.

“He’s someone who comes from the industry. That was important to me,” she said. “In this role, you need experience in the industry. To have credibility with clients, you have to talk about how you’ve helped other clients get marketing data results.”

Hayman joins Infogroup from AbsolutData Research & Analytics, where he served as general manager and SVP of CRM strategy and analysis. Previously, he was SVP of strategy and analysis at ClickSquared.

Both Ward and Hayman began work at Infogroup July 18. Both positions are new to the company.

Infogroup appointed Mike Iaccarino chairman of the company’s board of directors, the company said July 19.

Infogroup sold its research branch, Opinion Research Corp. International, to Chicago-based private equity firm Lake Capital earlier this month. The move enabled the company to shed about 400 full-time employees, or approximately 15% of its full-time workforce. The company also began a round of layoffs June 30 that reportedly cut 140 jobs.

Infogroup removed Mike Hilts, president of its interactive unit, and Tim Price, the unit’s SVP of sales and marketing, from their positions in May. It also began an initiative to consolidate its disparate business units the month before.

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