Last week, Allison Goldberg was named Senior Vice President of Time Warner Investments, following Rachel Lam’s decision to leave the company this spring. We spoke with Allison about what she’ll be doing in her new role and what she feels most proud about from her 16-year tenure with the company.
Tell us what you will be doing in your new role as Senior VP for TW investments.
I will be managing the investments group, making venture investments in companies that are strategic to Time Warner’s businesses. When we invest, we work closely with the company’s management team and execs from HBO, Warner Bros. and Turner to help create mutually beneficial partnerships.
What do you find most exciting about working in the tech/VC field?
I love technology and I love media, and I think it’s super interesting to learn about—and hopefully shape, through the investments we make—the way that the media industry evolves through the impact of new technologies and new business models. I particularly love working at Time Warner given the strength of all of our assets—we have the best people making the best content in the world.
When companies are being considered for investments, what do they like about having Time Warner as a partner?
I think they like the help that we can provide in terms of access to the right people to talk to at our divisions, which hopefully leads to great partnerships. And we have a long track record of being active board members/observers and helping our companies with business development, hiring, fundraising, etc.
What specific areas are you focusing on now?
Our group is focused on companies in a variety of sectors, including digital video (including creators/publishers, OTT services, technology providers, etc.), games and eSports, AI/machine learning as applied to media, and VR/AR.
As a veteran of the TW investments team, what are the one or two investments that you feel most proud of over your 16 years here?
That is like picking my favorite child! I love them all! My first investment is memorable; the CEO of WireImage called our main switchboard, asked if we do investing, and the call actually got to me. I read their deck (sent in the mail…wow I’ve been here a while), and we ended up investing. WireImage was an an early mover in building a digital platform for entertainment photography. It probably didn’t hurt that during due diligence I noticed a photo of Eddie Vedder from MTV Unplugged, taken by co-founder Kevin Mazur, hanging on the wall. I now have that print hanging in my office! It was a great team and a successful investment; we ended up selling the company to Getty Images. I’m also super proud of our investment in Bustle. We invested in them pre-launch, based on the strength of the team and idea, and they are now one of the largest digital publishers targeting millennial women — they are doing amazingly well!
Tell us about your own tech habits—what media do you watch, what devices or services can you not live without?
I am a total gadget junkie; I have to try everything! I am also a sucker for gadgets on Kickstarter (I even got the Pono, and am waiting on my Model 01 keyboard…maybe I should take a break from those for a while), and I think I might have all the Bluetooth speakers and home assistants. And yes, I do love TV. I subscribe to all of the channels and all of the OTT services and have forever. Newer favorites are Westworld, GoT, Silicon Valley, The Leftovers, Last Week Tonight (ok, so everything on HBO), Black Mirror and Transparent. My friends at Warner Bros. Television tell me that I’m going to love Riverdale, given my penchant for WB classics like Gilmore Girls, Everwood and One Tree Hill. But The X-Files is my #1. And I absolutely cannot live without my NBA League Pass app— getting to watch my beloved 76ers whenever/wherever is pretty much the best. #trusttheprocess