The NBC Sports Group has filled its ad sales chief role with Dan Lovinger after Seth Winter stepped down last month.
Linda Yaccarino, NBCUniversal's chairman of advertising sales and client partnerships, announced Lovinger's new position today as the evp for the NBCUniversal Sports Sales Group in a memo to employees, along with several other changes to her ad sales team.
Lovinger, who was previously evp for NBCUniversal's entertainment ad sales group, will oversee NBCUniversal Sport's ad sales, including its trio of major 2018 events: the Super Bowl, the Winter Olympics and the World Cup. "He was the perfect fit to head up the sports group," said Yaccarino. "He has been doing such a terrific job heading up the broadcast network, USA and Syfy, it really made a lot of sense to add to his portfolio of his experience."
He's replacing Winter, who announced last month he was stepping down, but would stay on as an advisor through 2018. A source said at the time that Winter's departure had nothing to do with the Summer Olympics missed guarantees.
Mark Marshall (previously svp for portfolio ad sales) will move from Chicago to New York to take over Lovinger's role as head of entertainment sales group, overseeing NBC Entertainment, USA and Syfy.
Yaccarino has created a new role—evp of portfolio sales and strategy—and put Mike Rosen in that position. Rosen (formerly evp ad sales for the news and Hispanic groups) will lead NBCUniversal's portal upfront strategy with clients and agencies, oversee the company's regional offices and head up the Audience Studio product sales teams.
"We really needed to create a position that is an outward facing, strategic executive that bridges the gap between all of our agency partners and our client partners. Deals just don't get transacted at the agencies anymore," said Yaccarino. "With our continued investment and all our data and analytics products, he's also going to be heading that sales team, which really accelerates our conversations direct all the time, which made sense to obviously put all the regions under Mike too. So it's really a byproduct of the transformation of the marketplace. And you just can't have vertical leads and a client partnership team, you need the connective tissue that brings all of that together."
Two execs will assume Rosen's former duties: Mark Miller has been promoted to lead sales for the news group, while Laura Molen (currently evp for lifestyle ad sales) will add the Telemundo sales group to her portfolio.
This is Yaccarino's biggest change to her organization since she merged the linear and digital ad sales teams last November.
Today's moves are "positioning us to be even more nimble and more directly aligned with clients," said Yaccarino.