USA, Univision Execs to Advise on Digital TV

Two executives with network experience in next-generation media and social TV have formed BRaVe Ventures, a company that will advise on and invest in companies and invest in digital technologies.

David Beck, former senior VP and general manager of social media at Univision, and Jesse Redniss, who had been senior VP of digital for USA Network, are joining forces with Vayner Media CEO and seed capital investor Gary Vaynerchuk in the new venture.

"There's no shortage of innovative ideas, but it's the company's ability to translate those innovations into core business results that sets the leaders apart," said Beck.

The company will help media companies create strategies for adopting new technology and help execute those strategies. It will counsel tech firms on how to engage with and integrate their products into existing media properties. And it will advise brands on digital and social marketing.

"To be successful in today's media ecosystem, companies must be 'brave,'" Redniss said. We want clients to understand that it's not only about having the best technology and most creative program. It's also putting all the pieces together with a seasoned team who can guide the process from planning to execution."

The venture already has one large media company client, but BRaVe declined to name the client because the project on which it is working has not yet been disclosed publicly. Among its tech start-up clients are Clasp TV, Listen First Media, and Contend. BRaVe has invested in Clasp TV. The company also works with Intermedia and Glow Interactive.

At USA Redniss made the network a leader in second-screen extensions to programming, many of which were sponsored. Beck led Univision's streaming and social media extensions of its World Cup soccer coverage.

"The entertainment industry is challenged with how to engage consumers at this critical tipping point," Vaynerchuk said in a statement. "Jesse and David are two executives who were part of a rare 'first-movers club,' setting the competitive bar in this digital evolution. By joining forces, we've formed the perfect team and model to help executives, networks and brands get past these challenges in such a dynamic and confusing space."

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.