You.i TV hires company's first COO

Ottawa-based You.i TV has hired its first chief operations officer, but the man stepping into the role says it’s not really a new position.

“I think it’s really just an unburdening of our CEO (Jason Flick), so that he can go focus on things that are critical to the growth or our company,” says Dan Beer. “I think this is really just now a company that is of a size it needs additional focus and more definitive depths of role.”

Mr. Beer, who was previously the managing director of IBM’s Performance Management Division, will be responsible for helping to support growth at You.i TV, which develops interfaces for user-interface frameworks to help developers build TV apps that work on mobile devices, tablets and smart TVs.

He will be responsible for “accelerating product development, optimizing You.i TV’s go-to-market processes and enabling You.i TV to scale to meet the needs of a growing and diversified customer base,” the company said in a release.

“Dan’s skills are uniquely suited to accelerate the next phase of You.i TV’s growth,” Mr. Flick said in a release. “He has a keen understanding of software products, a history of building partner relationships that deliver on customer expectations, and the ability to sustain the startup flexibility that has contributed to You.i TV’s success. His expertise spans all fundamental areas – including sales, channels, operations, services and support and performance analytics – that are relevant to the company’s expansion on a global scale.”

For Mr. Beer, working for You.i has major appeal.

“The company’s space itself is remarkable – all of the streaming video and rich content and immersive content that’s out there is an area that I think has not yet matured and is certainly dynamic and of interest,” he says. “The nature of the company is something I can’t stress enough – the market penetration they have, the customer list they’ve cultivated, the product they’re brought to market is tremendous. I’m just happy to be able to join such a team and hopefully can contribute to taking it further than it is.”

Among You.i’s customers are Sony’s Crackle, Rogers shomi service, Corus Entertainment and Turner Broadcasting. And it’s growing quickly – You.i made OBJ’s fastest-growing companies list in both 2015 and 2016.

While Mr. Beer has spent six years at IBM and worked at Cognos before that, he started his career with smaller firms.

“I did a startup myself in the late ’90s, where I was a co-founder and employee No. 2, so I’m really coming back to my roots more than anything else,” he says.