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December 09, 2015

Jim 'Mr. Skin' McBride to Deliver Keynote at 2016 Internext Expo

There are few sure bets in Las Vegas, but here’s one you can go all in on. Come January 16, the heavy hitters in the adult online industry will be at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Las Vegas for several days of intensive networking, educational seminars and high-energy parties. And at the center of it is the Internext keynote address. The keynote is always a high point of the Internext Expo, with past speakers representing some of the largest companies in the online world. Attendees have gotten the inside scoop from the leaders of such tech giants as Gamma Entertainment, FriendFinder Networks, Docler Media and Manwin (now known as Mindgeek). This year’s keynote speaker is the CEO of a company that is now in its 16th year and is an exemplar of the way in which an adult brand can gain traction in the mainstream entertainment world. That man is Jim McBride, who founded the site MrSkin.com back in 1999, before many of today’s leading companies were even a glimmer in a young programmer’s eye. McBride’s brainchild has grown into SK Intertainment, the digital media company that oversees such diverse brands as Naked News, Fleshbot and Mr. Man. Those who attended the Internext Expo in 2013 will fondly remember Mr. Skin’s participation that year, as the company was gearing up for expansion. Among the events it sponsored was a splashy night of entertainment at the KISS-themed Monster Mini Golf course, complete with a performance by the tribute band Mini KISS. AVN lobbed a few questions at McBride to get a preview of what the CEO will have up his sleeve for Internext attendees. AVN: When was the first time you attended Internext?Jim McBride: My first Internext was at the Venetian in January 2000. Mr. Skin was only four months old at that point, and Internext was the first trade show I had ever been to—let alone an adult trade show! I was like a kid in a candy store. The thing is: I still am!Are you looking forward to addressing the crowd at Internext?To be asked to address Internext is an honor by any standards. As a grown man known as “Mr. Skin,” though, it’s an honor beyond my wildest dreams. The adult business has been tremendously generous to me. It’s also been more fun than I could have ever imagined. So to speak before the industry’s biggest annual event is a privilege and an even bigger thrill than checking out the latest celebrity nudes!After 15 years as the head of your own company, what part of running your business excites you the most?As both an employer and just in general, I’ve always had a “generosity gene,” so it’s especially rewarding to see it pay off in the form of talented people who rise up through the ranks of the business. Sam Rakowski is one shining example. In 2001, Sam started out in our content department, looking for nip slips and writing down nude scene times. Now he’s the company president. Like Sam, many other employees have also been with us for more than a decade, and it’s great to see them flourishing in leadership roles. Everybody on the staff wants everyone else to succeed. That makes for a happy workplace. In fact, this is actually the company I grew up always wanting to work for, and not just because I get to stare at nude celebrities all day. That doesn’t hurt, of course.In 2014, Mr. Skin had a growth spurt, when you acquired Fleshbot and started Mr. Man. How have those business moves changed your company and affected your job as CEO?Mr. Man, which is like Mr. Skin for naked male celebrities, is responsible for the biggest change. It comes down to two words: nude dudes. So now I need to know some things about some THINGS, if you will. In reality, though, some of the parts (private and otherwise) may change with each new venture, but the heart of the company has always and will always remain the same. We hire the best people to do their best work and they hold themselves to the impeccable standards that have long been set by Mr. Skin.Where do you see the most promising growth areas for adult brands?The challenge is always: how do you compete with free content? Mr. Skin has answered that question, time and again, by providing users with a great, one-of-a-kind experience, delivering quality and material in a manner that can’t be found anywhere else, and charging a reasonable price. We continue to grow in this market, year after year.  Effectively monetizing web surfers who won’t ever join your site is also very important. We’re actually really bullish on that front for 2016 and beyond. We’ve all read the obituaries of display ads, but advertising is far from dead; it’s just constantly evolving. To the ongoing credit of my team, Mr. Skin has always evolved with it.Can you hint at any new business developments that might lie ahead for SK Intertainment?We have a lot in the works. Top of the list is a complete redesign of the Mr. Skin site slated to debut before the end of the year. It’s a whole new look with new features I can’t believe are even possible—but my team just keeps amazing us all. Prepare to be blown away. We’re also developing a new celebrity paysite for an old-school adult brand. It was of my earliest skinspirations, so suffice to say, I’m super stoked for that one. Other than that, our core businesses will remain adult, but we’re also expanding our “mainstream” reach. For example, through development and acquisition, we’re growing a network of safe-for-work men’s entertainment websites. So the Skinpire will be continue to expand into 2016 and beyond. Come on by any time and give us a one-handed salute! In addition to McBride’s speech and more events listed below, Internext will feature parties and other festive confabs, including the Traffic Dinner on January 16 and an invitation-only CEO Dinner on January 17. To make a great show even better, pre-registration at the show will start a day early. Attendees can pick up their badges on Friday, January 15 and be ready to roll for the first day of the show, which runs January 16-19. The presenting sponsor is Bitter Strawberry, with registration sponsored by Pussycash. Badge holders will gain admittance to the following events: • Networking affairs, including the Meet Market on January 16.• Internext’s robust program of educational seminars featuring experts in all aspects of online business.• The GFY Awards and the Webmasters Jam after party on January 18.• All GayVN at Internext events, including the GayVN Lounge.• A seat at the keynote presentation. With the show set to take place in just a few weeks, it’s time now to register for a badge and secure a hotel room. Go to Internext-Expo.com for more information, or join the Internext Facebook group.

 
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