CEO Carlos Watson said Monday that the board of media and entertainment company OG Media, which is accused of deceiving investors and advertisers, has changed its mind and will not close its doors.
“We’re going to open for business,” Watson said in an appearance on NBC News’ “Today” show. “This is our Lazarus moment, if you will.”
The New York-based Ozzy announced on Friday, October 1, that it would close the business. Call Goldman Sachs, a potential investor. Ozzy’s suspicious practices were first reported by the New York Times on September 26, leading to a slew of other revelations, including allegations of toxic workplace culture.
Over the weekend, Watson said, the company spoke with advertising partners, readers and viewers and investors – and concluded that Oz’s business was savings.
“The last few days have given a lot of people the opportunity to take cheap shots,” Watson told “Today” on Monday. “This does not mean that there is nothing we can do better. We need to do better in our data, we need to do better in marketing, I think we can do better in leadership and culture. ”
It is not clear how OG Media will be able to recover from the crisis.
Watson – who called media columnist Ben Smith a “ridiculous hit job” in the Times piece – complained in an interview with “Today” that Ozzy’s past crime was out of proportion to the media coverage, with reporters comparing him to Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes, who is accused of 12 counts of forgery. Is on trial. “We have five newsletters that have reached millions of people, winning an Emmy with a dozen TV shows. This is not a house of cards, ”Watson said.
In an “Today” interview, Watson said he was not at the Goldman Sachs conference with OG COO Sameer Rao, who is on leave. “[As] As part of the fundraising process, you end up talking to a lot of people, and I don’t make every call, ”he said. Watson added that he had not contacted the FBI or other law enforcement officials about allegations of criminal activity or fraud related to Goldman’s phone calls.
Oz Media’s alleged misconduct led to the resignation of Mark Lasery, owner of the Milwaukee Box and chairman of the hedge fund, which raised 2019 35 million for Oz in 2019. OG works with media. Former BBC News anchor and correspondent Katie K announced her departure from OG just three months ago last week. And Watson withdrew from hosting the documentary portion of this year’s News & Documentary Emmy Awards.
In the “Today” section, Watson also talks about his conflicts with Ozzy and Sharon Osborne. In a 2019 interview with CNBC, Watson proudly stated that he had a friendship with Osborne after the two parties settled a lawsuit comparing it to the company’s Oz Fest and Osborns’ Ozfest Music Festival – and that Osborns was an investor in Oz Media. Sep0 September, Sharon Osborne said in a CNBC interview that this is not true and called Watson “the biggest shame I’ve ever seen in my life.” On Monday, Watson hit back, claiming that OG Media had given the company Osborns shares as part of the legal settlement and that they were “investors”.
“Let’s be clear, I’m not going to raise money by telling sophisticated people,” Watson said on the “Today” show. “No smart investor is going to say, ‘Oh, great, you’ve got Sharon Osborne.’