Profile: David Rotem

Dec 2, 2002  •  Post A Comment

Title: Executive VP, national sales and event marketing, ESPN/ ABC Sports Customer Marketing and Sales
Recent interesting deal: “We did a deal with PepsiCo that tapped into many of the ESPN and ABC Sports assets. It included entitlement of the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl and the Bowl Champion Series selection show and full marketing rights, which included on-site signage, use of the BCS `marks,’ hospitality, tickets and additional tune-in promotion in USA Today. PepsiCo made a substantial investment in regular-season college football and in the NFL on both ESPN and ABC, which also includes a college football promotion for Tostitos that lives on both `ESPN’s College Gameday’ and ESPN.com. The deal also provided sideline cooler rights for Gatorade at all the BCS games, along with sponsorship of the ESPYs, ESPN: The Magazine, ESPN Regional Television and ESPN Classic.”
The next big thing: “As a content provider, there’s a real valuable business model for us in the wireless area. Right now some of the wireless companies still struggle with the church-and-state issue when it comes to evaluating a deal that includes both content and media; however, its real sponsorship value only works when the two are done hand in hand. Wireless is another distribution system for ESPN to reach our fans in a medium that will be huge. We believe that because of cable’s branded content, premiere brands like ESPN will drive wireless.”
Is there anything you wish you had sold less of: “Probably any deal that we’ve done recently that does not include an element beyond television. Right now I’d say 50 percent of all the deals we do include at least one of our other branded assets: ESPN Radio, ESPN.com, ESPN DePortes, ESPN Regional, enhanced TV, ESPN: The Magazine or ESPN International.”
Is there anything you wish you had sold more of: “While it’s taken for granted that we reach men, our adult ratings are also strong, and we’ve become more aggressive pursuing adult-targeted business. Our ESPN Original Entertainment initiative, our outdoors programming block and the Little League World Series have a great deal of upside. I also feel that both ESPN Classic and ESPNEWS represent two franchises that offer advertisers efficient and impactful marketing platforms.”
If you weren’t in media selling: “I’d like to be general manager of the New York Knicks without a salary cap. Seriously though, if not media, I think I would have pursued a career as an agent in either sports or the entertainment industry.”