Sasse Departs iriver America CEO Position

Digital Trends has learned that a management shake up has occurred at MP3 player manufacturer iriver America. This shake up has resulted in the departure of former CEO Jonathan Sasse for greener pastures.

Sasse, in an email exchange with Digital Trends, confirmed he had in fact left iriver America, makers of the popular clix portable media player, for an undisclosed start up.

“An opportunity presented itself late this summer that would allow me to work with another young organization that was just getting started,” said Sasse in an email. “In working with Rio and iriver in the past, this is the part of building companies that I enjoy the most. This came at a time when our Korean parent [Reigncom] was looking to take iriver in a new direction globally, so the timing was right to make a change.”

When asked about the new direction iriver was going and if that had anything to do with the management change, Sasse stated “it was really a combination of things, partly due to our parent company looking to shift some of the global product line focus and partly due to the opportunity that came up. I enjoyed my time at iriver a great deal and should those specific combination of events not occurred I would likely still be there.”

Digital Trends, seeking comment from iriver regarding the management change, was informed by a spokesperson that “Jonathan has left the company to pursue other interests and we will miss him” and “we have made staffing changes in our North American offices that include staffing the offices with several members of the iriver Global team including Andrew Yang, who will be stepping into the role of CEO at iriver America.”

This spokesperson also explained the new direction of iriver America would be “focusing effort on the clix portable media player”.

Sasse, for his part, did not seem upset over the change.

“Clearly I wish iriver all the best,” he said, “as the parent company aligns the roadmap for continued success I would envision some expansion of the device line-up to take advantage of new connected trends in the industry.”

We hope to have more information on iriver’s new CEO Andrew Yang as well as more details on Sasse’s departure shortly.


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