Demon poaches marketing director from rival Netcom

Demon Internet has poached David Firness from rival Internet access provider Netcom, to become the company’s sales & marketing director.

Firness replaces Samantha Smith, former marketing director of Burger King and head of marketing at McDonald’s, who abruptly left the firm at the end of last month (MW July 31).

Smith had held the post of marketing director at the firm, the UK’s leading “pure” Internet access provider, for seven months.

The appointment appears to indicate a retrenchment in commercial strategy for Demon away from the mass marketing approach its founder Cliff Stanford heralded for the coming year when announcing Smith’s appointment in December.

Furniss, who joined Netcom at its launch in May 1996, has built its business growth around developing Internet-based services aimed at the business rather than consumer market.

“His experience is in developing products and services aimed at small business managers rather than consumers who want to play games on the Internet,” says a source close to Netcom.

One of Furniss’s first tasks will be to review the estimated 4m promotional account awarded by Smith to BMP new media subsidiary BMP InterAction in March.

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