Thumbplay News

As the Internet goes mobile, wireless carriers are updating their business models. When Verizon and other U.S. cellphone carriers began selling mobile content like ringtones, games and wallpapers a few years ago, they kept a tight grip on what consumers could buy, allowing content to be loaded on their phones only if it came through their own branded portals.

Now, betting that they can get more money by expanding the pie, they are cautiously allowing third-party content providers to market multimedia content directly to their cellphone users.

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Hundreds of influential business leaders gathered to celebrate industry innovators Cushman & Wakefield gala corporate host sponsor

NEW YORK - November 7, 2006
Thumbplay ( today announced that Founder and CEO Are Traasdahl has been named a winner of the New York Ten Awards, an annual selection of ten individuals and companies in the greater New York business community that display extraordinary innovation and leadership in their industry and beyond. Traasdahl has been honored with the "Best New Product or Service" award. Founded in late 2004, Thumbplay is now the leading retailer of mobile entertainment content and one of the fastest-growing sites on the Web. In the past two months, Thumbplay has announced content partnerships with the Walt Disney Internet Group and Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Last week the company announced it has raised $15 million in new funding.

"I am deeply honored to win the Ten Award for the Best New Product or Service," said Are Traasdahl, CEO of Thumbplay. "Thumbplay has established itself as the top retailer of mobile entertainment content. It's a privilege that our dedication to the very best content and unparalleled customer experience have been recognized by the Ten Award committee."

The awards were presented Monday night at the Ten Awards Gala at Cipriani Wall Street, produced again by Empire Entertainment, Inc. Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett-Packard and author of the new book, Tough Choices, delivered the keynote remarks. Liz Claman, co-anchor of CNBC's Morning Call and author of the upcoming book, The Best Investment Advice I Ever Received, served as Master of Ceremonies. Cushman & Wakefield served as host sponsor of the gala, and 2004 Ten Award winner and Cushman & Wakefield President and CEO Bruce Mosler introduced Ms. Fiorina.

"We congratulate this year's winners, who are at the helm of the most prominent and emerging growth organizations, and salute them for bringing innovation, leadership, integrity, and community involvement to the forefront of the New York business community" said Robert Johnston, president of the Executive Council of New York. "These luminaries are leading by example and inspiring new standards of novel ideas and success."

Following is a complete list of the 2006 Ten Awards Winners:

Best New Product or Service: Are Traasdahl, Thumbplay and David Rose, Angelsoft LLC

Best Up and Comer: Jared Kushner, The New York Observer

Innovator of the Year:
Jason Finger, SeamlessWeb

CEO of the Year: Jonathan Tisch, Loews Hotels

CIO of the Year: Jack Nelson, Mount Sinai Medical Center

CFO of the Year: David Turner, The Thomson Corporation - for his recent position as CFO, Thomson Financial

Marketer of the Year: John Hayes, American Express

Best Executive Team: Tim Armstrong, Penry Price and Craig Nevill-Manning, Google NY

Best International Non-Profit: Ami Nahshon, The Abraham Fund Initiatives

Dealmaker of the Year: Philip Falcone, Harbinger Capital Partners and Jonathan Gray, The Blackstone Group

Educator of the Year: Dr. Deborah Kenny, Village Academies

The Ten Awards finalists were drawn from open nominations submitted to the Executive Council of New York. Hundreds of nominations were screened and evaluated by a panel of judges comprised of prominent journalists from New York-based local and national business media outlets, and evaluated based on the individual's contributions to his or her organization's objectives and leadership; the organization's impact on business innovation, both in New York and nationally; and the individual's industry leadership beyond his or her organization.

For more information on the Ten Awards and the Executive Council of New York, please visit

Previous Ten Awards winners have included: Barry Sternlicht, CEO, Starwood Hotels; David Neeleman, CEO, JetBlue Airways; Jim McCann, CEO, 1800Flowers; Donna Iucolano, President, e-Scholastic; Sallie Krawcheck, CEO, Smith Barney (now CFO, Citigroup); Alan Patricof, Chairman, Apax Partners; Gordon Crovitz, President, Dow Jones; Shelby Bonnie, CEO, CNET Networks; Hossein Eslambolchi, President, AT&T Labs; Kumar Mahadeva, CEO, Cognizant; Martin Nisenholtz, CEO, New York Times Digital; Bruce Mosler, CEO, Cushman & Wakefield; Kevin Ryan, CEO, DoubleClick; Adam Moss, Editor in Chief, New York Magazine; Tim and Nina Zagat, Co-chairs, Zagat Survey.

About Thumbplay

Thumbplay Inc. is the leading online retailer of mobile entertainment content. The company aggregates, promotes and delivers mobile content directly to members via The site offers ringtones, wallpapers, games and text-based services through a membership-based, community experience. Thumbplay, headquartered in New York, was founded by CEO Are Traasdahl and Executive Vice President, Marketing Evan Schwartz.

About The Executive Council

The Executive Council is New York's premier business forum for senior executives, their advisors and capital markets professionals. Through its member base of 3,500 New York metro business leaders, the organization has built a reputation for highly acclaimed conferences, executive education programs and member-hosted gatherings that focus on critical business and leadership issues at the forefront of corporate America today. The Executive Council Corporate Members range from American Express, IBM and Microsoft to Sprint, Cushman & Wakefield, and McKinsey & Co. as well as many other large and emerging growth companies.

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