Disney Reorganizes Ad Sales, Names Top Execs

Disney Advertising Sales, which represents the company’s broadcast, cable and digital outlets including ESPN announced a new strategy and structure.

The new ad sales organization has three parts: Sales, client & brand solutions and revenue & operations.

“Combining world class sales teams from across the Company will result in a more efficient and effective way for our clients to do business with us,” said Rita Ferro, president of Disney Advertising Sales.

“Further, our focus on deeper, data-driven understanding of our clients’ businesses and media strategies will enable us to continue helping our clients maximize the value of their marketing spend and grow their businesses through our robust portfolio of platforms. I am confident that our renewed vision and the resulting structure positions our current offerings for maximum growth as our business and the marketplace continue to evolve,” she said.

The sales organization is led by six senior VPs, each reporting to Ferro. They are: Patricia Betron, Marco Forte, Flora McKiernan, Andrew Messina, Wendell Scott, and Jeremiah Tachna. Also part of the sales leadership team is Adam Monaco, who oversees national TV sales for the ABC-owned television stations.

The client & brand solution group is divided into four teams.

  • Wanda Young will serve as senior VP, client solutions - insights & creative. She will lead a team responsible for developing deep understanding of and insight into clients’ consumers and industries through research and data, and will translate insights into compelling ad strategies, creative campaigns and customized solutions.
  • Sports Brand Solutions, led by Sean Hanrahan, senior VP, Sports Brand Solutions. This function will act as the Group’s brand, sports, leagues and product experts, providing sponsorship and integration opportunities and supporting sales teams with deep expertise on the ESPN portfolio which includes ESPN’s domestic networks, ESPN on ABC, ESPN.com, ESPN3, ESPN The Magazine, ESPN Radio, ESPN International, ESPN+ and ESPN Mobile.
  • Led by Jerry Daniello, senior VP, entertainment brand solutions, the entertainment brand solutions team will serve as entertainment brand and product experts for the Disney Kids and Family Portfolio, ABC Entertainment, ABC News, ABC Daytime, ABC Late-Night, Syndication, Freeform and The Disney Digital Network, providing sponsorship and integration opportunities and supporting sales teams.
  • International Alliances, led by Zach Chapman, VP, international alliances. This area will lead coordination with the company’s portfolio of ad sales businesses around the world, and help to facilitate comprehensive relationships with the marketers and agencies who desire global marketing solutions with the portfolio of brands.

The revenue & operations unit is led by executive VP Laura Nathanson. Reporting to Nathanson are Doug Hochstadt, Travis Howe, James Minnich, Laura Nelson, and James Vanderhoef.

Josh Mattison, VP, business operations, will also report to Ferro and will be responsible for leading strategic initiatives across the organization.

The ad sales organization is part of Disney’s Direct-to-Consumer and International segment.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.