NEW YORK - Discovery announced today the appointment of Alex Wellen as President and General Manager of Motor Trend Group, the largest automotive media company in the world. Wellen joins Discovery following 12 years with CNN Worldwide, having most recently served as Global Chief Product Officer. The announcement was made by Mike Lang, President, International Development & CEO Motor Trend.
'Alex is a tremendous talent, with the world-class digital expertise we need to drive our global ambitions for Motor Trend Group,' said Lang. 'Motor Trend exemplifies Discovery's goal for scaling our digital businesses, by super-serving passionate auto enthusiasts with the content they crave on all screens, as well as providing advertisers access to an unparalleled cross-platform audience segment. I look forward to working with Alex to take Motor Trend to its next level of success.'
Effective July 1, Wellen will oversee all aspects of Motor Trend Group's overall strategic direction and global growth of the business including, the highly successful Motor Trend App and motortrend.com digital platforms, Motor Trend Buyer's Guide, Motor Trend Network, coming Fall 2018 (Discovery's cable network currently named Velocity), related Motor Trend Group digital owned & operated sites (such as Hot Rod and Automobile) and Motor Trend's successful live event and media agency businesses. He will be responsible for all functions of the business such as Product, Content, Marketing and Operations, as well as responsibility for the Motor Trend Network. Bob Scanlon, President and General Manager of Motor Trend Network and Automotive Content for Motor Trend Group, will report to Wellen.
Since January, the Motor Trend App has doubled subscribers to become the largest auto related digital platform in the U.S, with plans to expand internationally, initially in Europe. Hit shows such as RoadKill, Hot Rod Garage, JDM Legends and Wheeler Dealers, as well as Discovery Channel shows such as Fast N' Loud and Misfit Garage, have all been the video content fuel driving this tremendous digital growth. This not only includes the 35 million monthly video views across Motor Trend's digital platforms, but also Motor Trend Network's 70M+ homes across the U.S. and 18 consecutive months of year-over-year primetime delivery growth, as well as many Motor Trend live auto events and auctions across the globe and highly targeted branded content for advertisers.
'We are very excited about having Alex join the Motor Trend team. His deep media expertise will be invaluable to helping us achieve our goal of accelerating Motor Trend's growth and further establishing it as the premier content platform for auto enthusiasts,' said Steven Tananbaum, Founding Partner and Chief Investment Officer of GoldenTree Asset Management LP, Discovery's joint venture partner in Motor Trend Group.
Over the past decade, Wellen has been central to transforming the CNN television network into a digital global powerhouse - #1 in multiplatform monthly uniques and the fastest-growing business unit within CNN Worldwide. His career has spanned executive roles across digital and linear television businesses including product, technology, strategy, revenue, business operations, and programming. As Chief Product Officer, he set the vision for CNN's mobile, web, data, video, OTT, and connected TV platforms, and delivered hundreds of new products across traditional, digital, and emerging businesses including CNNgo. Prior to that role, Wellen also served as Senior Executive Producer, spearheading CNN Worldwide's strategy to integrate television programming, editorial content, and products across all platforms and devices.
Before working in media, Alex Wellen was a high-tech intellectual property litigator. He has published two books with Penguin Random House, and is the inventor on dozens of patents. Wellen holds a law degree from Temple University, a systems engineering degree from Rutgers, and attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School. He will be based at Motor Trend Group's headquarters in El Segundo, CA.
'If you're in the business of creating fan-based brands, I cannot think of a more personal category than automotive, a more iconic global brand than Motor Trend, or a more gifted team than the talent I've met at Discovery and Motor Trend Group,' added Wellen. 'I am proud to take on this incredible role and to help reimagine how Motor Trend connects with advertisers, distributors, and automotive fans.'
For headshot, click here (Photo Credit: Turner)
About Motor Trend Group:
Motor Trend Group is the largest automotive media company in the world, bringing together Discovery's fast-growing Velocity network and a vast automotive digital, direct-to-consumer, social and live event portfolio, including Motor Trend, Hot Rod, Roadkill, Automobile, and more than 20 other industry-leading brands. With a cumulative reach of more than 131 million, the company encompasses television's #1 network for automotive super fans, a leading automotive YouTube Channel, and the Motor Trend app, the only auto-dedicated subscription video-on-demand service.
Discovery, Inc. (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) is a global leader in real life entertainment, serving a passionate audience of superfans around the world with content that inspires, informs and entertains. Discovery delivers over 8,000 hours of original programming each year and has category leadership across deeply loved content genres around the world. Available in 220 countries and territories and 50 languages, Discovery is a platform innovator, reaching viewers on all screens, including TV Everywhere products such as the GO portfolio of apps and Discovery Kids Play; direct-to-consumer streaming services such as Eurosport Player and Motor Trend OnDemand; digital-first and social content from Group Nine Media and a strategic alliance with the PGA Tour to create the Global Home of Golf. Discovery's portfolio of premium brands includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, Food Network, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Travel Channel, Turbo/Velocity, Animal Planet, and Science Channel, as well as OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network in the U.S., Discovery Kids in Latin America, and Eurosport, the leading provider of locally relevant, premium sports and Home of the Olympic Games across Europe. For more information, please visit www.corporate.discovery.com and follow @DiscoveryIncTV across social platforms.