EXCLUSIVE: I’ve learned that Kim Williams, COO of the NFL Network, is finalizing a deal to join CORE Media Group as CFO. Williams is expected to be a key lieutenant for new CORE president Marc Graboff who has been rebuilding the management team since CKx was transformed into CORE in May. She joins recent additions Peter Hurwitz who joined as EVP, General Counsel; Matt Apfel as Chief Digital Officer; Jason Morey as EVP and Worldwide Head of Music for 19 Entertainment; as well as Kay Straky as EVP Human Resources.
As Chief Operating Officer of NFL Network, Williams was responsible for the day-to-day management of the National Football League’s cable television assets. She previously served as SVP & Chief Financial Officer for the NFL, responsible for the League’s overall financial activities including financial reporting and analysis, financial routines and controls, and long-range strategic planning. Before that, she served as SVP & Chief Financial Officer for NBC West Coast where she worked with Graboff.
CORE Media Group (formerly CKx), the umbrella company whose portfolio includes reality series American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance, has acquired Sharp Entertainment, Matt Sharp’s New York-based reality television production company behind such programs as the Travel Channel’s Man V. Food, TLC’S Extreme Couponing, National Geographic’s Doomsday Preppers and Animal Planet’s Call Of The Wildman. This marks the first acquisition for CORE under new president Marc Graboff, who said in May that he plans to grow the company through strategic purchases. “This announcement is another step in our efforts to expand the breadth of our content offerings and align CORE with some of the industry’s most talented and innovative producers,” Graboff said of Sharp’s acquisition today. CORE also has been among the companies looking at buying Dick Clark Prods. Read More »
UPDATED: CKx, the company whose portfolio includes reality series American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance, the Elvis Presley estate and the Muhammad Ali brand, has been rebranded CORE Media Group, Inc. It is run by former NBC executive Marc Graboff, who was named president earlier this year and has made his first management appointments. “Our focus now is to take CORE to the next level,” Graboff said. “This means everything from creative content, and new means of distribution to changing the way we partner with sponsors, producers and artists to grow our business.” Graboff’s senior management appointments do not include creative positions as he plans to take his time making executive decisions in that area. But he is busy with dealmaking, closing in on several overall deals with unscripted producers and a reality company acquisition. Core is targeting cable reality and scripted series as well as game shows for its development slate, Graboff said, adding that he plans to build the company around its strong core licensing, merchandising and integrated marketing operations. Read More »
NBC has hired a new chief deal negotiator. Veteran MTV networks executive George Cheeks has been named EVP, Business Operations, NBC Entertainment and Universal Television. While his title and responsibilities are not exactly the same, Cheeks is envisioned as a replacement for NBC veteran Marc Graboff, who left the company at the end of last year to run American Idol parent company CKX. Cheeks, who will oversee Business Affairs, Music Services and Production Operations for NBC and studio Universal TV, currently serves as EVP, Business Affairs and General Counsel, Viacom Music and Entertainment Groups, Content Distribution & Marketing and Head of Standards & Practices for Viacom Media Networks. He will start at NBC in the fall, following the conclusion of his contractual commitment with Viacom. “George is the consummate entertainment business executive who has successfully overseen virtually all aspects of television,” said NBC chairman Robert Greenblatt, to whom Cheeks will report. “His vast experience, acumen and positive industry contacts will prove to be invaluable as we move forward to achieve our new goals at NBC.” Read More »
Former top NBC executive Marc Graboff, who left the network last month, is finalizing a deal to run CKX, the parent company of Fox’s juggernaut American Idol. I’ve learned that Graboff will serve as president of CKX, with his … Read More »
The last top player from the Jeff Zucker regime at NBC is gone. Marc Graboff, a 11-year NBC veteran, will be leaving the network. NBC chairman Bob Greenblatt broke the news to his staff in an email (below). The likable … Read More »
Veteran NBC executive Marc Graboff, president of West Coast TV Business Operations at NBCUniversal, has been elected to the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Foundation’s board of directors. The foundation’s board oversees such initiatives as the Archive of American … Read More »