Archive for the ‘"Project Runway"’ Category

Former Lifetime Network CEO Andrea Wong Joins Board Of QVC’s Parent, Liberty Media

April 29, 2010

The cable industry is a small, tight-knit world, and you never know who is going to end up where. But we learned Thursday that Andrea Wong, former president and CEO of Lifetime Entertainment Services, was named to Liberty Media’s board.

Liberty is QVC’s parent company.

“Andrea’s extensive experience in media and expertise in programming will be valuable in helping guide Liberty,” Liberty CEO Greg Maffei said in a canned statement. “We look forward to her contributions as our newest board member.”

Wong had joined Lifetime from The Walt Disney Co.’s ABC, where during her 14-year tenure she served in a variety of roles, most notably as an executive vice president where her responsibilities included reality programming.

We interviewed Wong several times when she was at Lifetime, and she had a bumpy tenure at the women’s channel. She brought over Bravo’s hit “Project Runway,” but only after a prolonged legal battle. The ratings for the network were good.

Then last year Lifetime’s joint ownership, Disney and A&E Networks, was unraveled. Wong left this week, and her vacancy was filled Tuesday with an A&E Nets veteran, History Channel’s GM Nancy Dubuc.

Dubuc is a talented, ambitious executive that we once profiled.

We wonder how active a voice Wong will have regarding QVC.

Before Lifetime, Wong worked in the areas of corporate planning and high-yield finance. Wong obtained her bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an M.B.A. from the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

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New York Post Paints QVC’s New Design Star Isaac Mizrahi As More Than A Bit Bitchy

February 24, 2010

The New York Post is offering up some dish on QVC’s new in-house designer, Isaac Mizrahi. And it doesn’t match the folksy, likeable persona that he shows viewers on QVC.

The dirt comes in the Post’s story Wednesday about William McComb, the relatively new CEO of Liz Claiborne, Mizrahi’s primary roost before his switch to soup-to-nuts, housewares-to-clothing, designer for QVC. McComb has had his hands full at Liz Claiborne, with the founders of its pricey Juicy Couture line storming out a month ago.

The Post says the Juicy Couture folk were irked that profits from their company were being used to pay for Mizrahi to rejuvenate the Liz Claiborne line. The Juicy girls were also miffed that their brand’s financial success was essentially footing the bill for Claiborne to bring “Project Runway” star Tim Gunn on board as its chief creative officer, whatever that title means.

Then the Post nails Mizrahi. It says that the curly-topped designer was a big “headache” to McComb, “delivering a giant flop with an overly trendy relaunch of Liz Claiborne last spring.”

The Post also claims that Mizrahi was none too happy about Gunn’s appearance on the scene, “complaining that Gunn was getting too much attention touring shopping malls and shilling for the label.”

So Liz Claiborne put the kibosh on Gunn’s appearances, according to the Post. But despite his alleged griping about Gunn, Mizrahi himself didn’t want to go out and do the Claiborne dog-and-pony shows for the unwashed masses at the nation’s new town squares, malls.

“It was like pulling teeth” to get Mizrahi to do public appearances for Claiborne, a source told the Post.

So which is it? Is Isaac just a down-to-earth, touchy-feely, likable and talented guy from Brooklyn, a prima donna that is a pain in the butt to work with, or both?

We’ll be like Fox News Channel (perish the thought, we’d rather burn in hell), and let you decide.