AOP announces the appointment of Mary Beth (MB) Christie, Head of Product Management for FT.com as the Committee Chair of its newly formed Product Development Committee.

The AOP Board has tasked the AOP Product Development Committee with ensuring that digital publishers maximise value from their investments in technology. The Committee will cover a diverse range of subjects, from diversifying revenues, to emerging web technologies, product development best practice and product selection.

Lee Baker, Director of AOP comments on the appointment, “We’re delighted that MB has agreed to chair this new AOP Committee – these groups act as the nerve centre of AOP, and I have no doubt MB will be instrumental in bringing our membership together to share knowledge and develop common approaches in what is an absolutely key area.”

MB Christie, new Product Development Committee Chair adds, “I’m thrilled to be chairing this group. I think there is a great opportunity to create a common understanding of the roles and responsibilities of digital product managers, and I’ll be aiming to encourage media owners to recognise the discipline as a critical part of their digital transformation. "

MB joined FT.com in January 2007 as Head of Product Management. She manages the online product team that handles all of the Financial Times’ digital media; including the core FT.com website, interactive markets data features, blogs, and search. In this capacity she has been instrumental in transforming the Financial Times from a traditional newspaper publisher into a web-centric business.

Previous to her work at the FT, MB was Head of Product Development at Rightmove.co.uk, the UK’s largest property website. Prior to that, she was Product Development Director for QXL Ricardo PLC, a leading online auction website in Europe. In 1991, Christie founded Resources, the first phone directory published in post-communist Czechoslovakia. She remained President of the company until 1999.

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Further information from:
Lee Baker, Director AOP 020 7400 7568 / lee.baker@ukaop.org.uk
Lorette Nettar, PR AOP 07968 521 684 / lorette.nettar@ukaop.org.uk

About the Financial Times

The Financial Times, one of the world’s leading business news organisations, is recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. Providing extensive news, comment and analysis, the newspaper is printed at 23 print sites across the globe, has a daily circulation of 408,544 (ABC figures, September, 2009) and a readership of 1.3 million people worldwide. FT.com is the definitive home for business intelligence on the web, providing an essential source of news, comment, data and analysis for the global business community. FT.com attracts 11.4 million unique users, generating 83.2 million page views (ABCe figures, March 2009) and now has over 1.2 million registered users.

About AOP

The UK Association of Online Publishers (AOP) is the industry body representing online publishing companies that create original, branded, quality content. AOP champions the interests of companies from newspaper and magazine publishing, TV and radio broadcasting, and pure online media. The AOP raises awareness, lobbies and addresses concerns relating to all areas of online publishing to industry and Government; covering topics such as paid-for-content, online subscription models, data protection, copyright, content management, new technologies and audience measurement. AOP publishes original research including the annual Census now in its seventh year. It also hosts forums, conferences and events, where members can debate issues, meet peers and network.

The AOP hosts two annual flagship industry events, the AOP Digital Publishing Awards which was held in June 2009, and the AOP Digital Publishing Summit which was held in October 2009.

AOP Members include AN Digital, Bauer Consumer Media, BBC, BBC Worldwide, BSkyB, CBS Interactive, Channel 4 New Media, Condé Nast Digital, Economist Group, Financial Times, Future Publishing, Global Radio, Guardian Media Group, Haymarket Media Group, Incisive Media, Independent New Ventures, IPC Media, ITV, The National Magazine Company, News International Ltd, PPA, Reed Business Information, Telegraph Media Group Ltd, Thomson Reuters, Trader Media, Trinity Mirror, TSL Education, Which? www.ukaop.org.uk

Published on: 12:09PM on 10th November 2009