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Quincy Smith and his sneakers are leaving CBS

October 28, 2009 | 10:48 am

Quincy Smith, the fast-talking, sneakers-loving new-media chief of old media giant CBS Corp. is leaving to start his own Silicon Valley consulting firm.

SMITH Quincy hi res Smith, the chief executive of CBS Interactive, was seen as primarily a deal-maker. The company lately has moved away from buying to building its assets. Neil Ashe, president of CBS Interactive, will inherit the top spot but not Smith's title.

There have been rumors for months that Smith was a short-timer at CBS. He had signed a three-year deal with CBS in 2006. The announcement, which came just after All Things Digital popped the news, goes out of its way to make clear that Smith's Nikes are still welcome inside the company's Black Rock headquarters. He is staying in his current post as chief executive of CBS Interactive through the rest of the year and will continue to advise the company after he is gone as part of a multi-year consulting deal.

Smith joined CBS in 2006 and engineered a series of acquisitions, culminating in the $1.8-billion purchase of the Internet tech portal CNET. Some analysts have argued that CBS overpaid for CNET.

CBS Chief Executive Leslie Moonves heaped praise on Smith for his time at CBS. "Quincy helped put CBS Interactive on the map, and we are now a top 10 presence. ... His entrepreneurial spirit and his passion for the business have helped this company attract some of the most creative minds working in digital media."

-- Joe Flint

Photo: Quincy Smith. Credit: CBS