Vimeo promotes Anjali Sud to CEO after canceling SVOD plans

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IAC-owned streaming video site Vimeo has a new CEO: Anjali Sud, who previously led the company’s creator business. The appointment comes as the company has scrapped plans to launch a subscription video-on-demand service and decided instead to double down on efforts to bring more professional and semi-professional creators to the platform.

Sud originally joined Vimeo in 2014 to lead marketing, after holding various positions at Amazon and Time Warner. Two years later, she was promoted to SVP and general manager of the creator business, where she oversaw the operations behind its SaaS tools for uploading and hosting their videos on the site.

With her most recent promotion, Sud replaces interim chief executive Joey Levin, who held the role while also serving as CEO of parent company IAC. The hire also puts to rest some strategic questions around how Vimeo plans to grow and make money in the years to come.

Under previous CEO Kerry Trainor, Vimeo invested heavily to offer a stable of high-quality content. That included investing in original content made for the platform, as well as bringing on on-demand content from third-party channels and production houses.

With that content, Vimeo hoped to launch a subscription video-on-demand service to compete with the likes of Netflix and Hulu. Those plans never came to fruition, however, as the company announced late last month that it was pulling back on its SVOD ambitions and would focus instead on its creator business.

Strategically that plan makes sense, as Vimeo would never be able to compete with Netflix or Amazon on the amount it could spend on original content, and both had a serious head start on attracting customers to their platforms.

More importantly, however, the creator business is a major revenue generator for Vimeo, which has more than 800,000 subscribers paying for its creator tools. With Sud now at the helm, Vimeo will be spending its money on improving its tech rather than trying to license content.

Already, Vimeo has worked to add support for 360-degree video, create membership plans for marketers and brands, as well as improve integration with the tools video professionals use in their end-to-end workflow. As it looks to improve its platform, the company expects to invest more in live video, as well as tools to enable creators to build their own on-demand streaming services and channels.