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December 1, 2023

The News Movement appoints interim CEO to succeed William Lewis

Ramin Beheshti is one of The News Movement's five co-founders and currently its president.

By Charlotte Tobitt

Social-focused The News Movement has appointed an interim chief executive to succeed Sir William Lewis when he leaves for the Washington Post in January.

Currently president at The News Movement, Ramin Beheshti co-founded the Gen Z-targeted newsbrand alongside Lewis and editor-in-chief Kamal Ahmed as well as former Dow Jones chief of staff Eleanor Breen and ex-head of technology and architecture at The Wall Street Journal Dion Bailey.

Beheshti, formerly group chief product and technology officer at Dow Jones, will become interim chief executive on 1 January.

Ex-Dow Jones chief executive Lewis, who is The News Movement’s largest shareholder, is joining The Washington Post in the same role the next day.

As part of the leadership changes, Ahmed will join The News Movement‘s board and take on a broader role overseeing content strategy across its brand portfolio. As well as The News Movement itself, the company has acquired US-based video news start-up The Recount.

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A spokesperson described Beheshti as being “critical to our growth so far” and said he has “led many of our investor conversations, business partnerships and has supported the development of our editorial offering, with which we are now seeing record audience growth”.

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The brand, which launched in beta in November 2021 and went official a year later, has 275,000 followers across all social platforms. The News Movement also moved into audio for the first time this quarter.

Former BBC News editorial director Ahmed told Press Gazette earlier this month the start-up is “on a path to profitability” with “record revenue” and growing enquiries from clients. “We have proved that our model works,” he said.

He dismissed reports that The News Movement is looking for a Gen Z chief executive to permanently replace Lewis: “Frankly I don’t care whether they’re 70 or 20 – if they’re the right person, we would love to hear from them.”

Ahmed also said: “That The News Movement’s founder and majority [largest] shareholder is now the chief executive and publisher of The The Washington Post must only be good for The News Movement,” he said.

“I don’t want anyone to forget that Will is the reason, with the other co-founders, that The News Movement exists.”

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