George Kliavkoff appointed CEO at cinematic virtual reality company Jaunt Inc.
Kliavkoff, who had been co-president of Entertainment & Syndication at Hearst, will relocate from NYC to Silicon Valley
Palo Alto, Calif. – September 12, 2016 – Jaunt Inc., the industry leader in cinematic virtual reality (VR), today announced that it has appointed George Kliavkoff as chief executive officer. A recognized leader in traditional and new media, Kliavkoff will join the company effective today. Jaunt founder Arthur van Hoff, who has served as interim CEO, will resume his role as chief technology officer.
Kliavkoff joins Jaunt from Hearst Corporation where he served as co-president of Entertainment & Syndication, Hearst’s largest operating division responsible for Hearst’s interests in cable television networks, including ESPN, Lifetime, A&E and History; television production and distribution; newspaper syndication; and merchandise licensing. Kliavkoff also served as president of Hearst Ventures, which makes strategic investments in companies operating at the intersection of media and technology.
Prior to Hearst, Kliavkoff was chief digital officer at NBC Universal, where he was among the team responsible for the creation and launch of Hulu.com. He was Hulu’s first leader and served on the JV’s board. Kliavkoff vastly expanded the NBCU’s digital media strategy, developing new business models and markets and overseeing the distribution of video and other products and services across digital platforms. Prior to NBCU, he was an executive vice president for Major League Baseball Advanced Media where he oversaw MLB’s online and mobile subscription and licensing businesses as well as all business development.
Jaunt has received funding from prominent media companies and venture capital firms including The Walt Disney Company, Evolution Media Partners, China Media Capital, Highland Capital Partners, Google Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Axel Springer, ProSiebenSat.1 SE, The Madison Square Garden Company, Peter Gotcher and Sky.
“George’s strategic vision and expertise scaling innovative global media companies are exactly the right combination to take Jaunt to the next level,” said van Hoff. “His proven track record for introducing forward-thinking video technology platforms to mainstream audiences makes him an exceptional fit for us. The board and I are thrilled that he is joining the company.”
“I have been consistently impressed by Jaunt and am excited to lead the team at this point in the company’s evolution,” said Kliavkoff. “Jaunt is set to dramatically change the way people enjoy immersive content, and the company is setting the bar in innovation and cinematic storytelling excellence in virtual reality.”
With a continued focus on aggressive growth globally, Jaunt recently announced the public availability of its industry-leading end-to-end VR pipeline consisting of the Jaunt ONE camera, Jaunt Cloud Services (JCS) and the Jaunt Publishing distribution platform. The company has also made significant international expansions with the launch of Jaunt China in partnership with Shanghai Media Group (SMG) and China Media Capital (CMC), and the opening of offices in Amsterdam and London.
Recent content releases and partnerships have included a multi-year exclusive deal with ESL, a documentary series with Paul McCartney, and work with the MLB Hall of Fame, culminating in more than 100 cinematic VR experiences. The Jaunt VR App, including all content released to date, is available on iOS, Android, Gear VR, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Desktop 360.
Kliavkoff will relocate from New York City to Silicon Valley. He earned his BA from Boston University and his JD from the University of Virginia.