Yaccarino Adds Local Ad Sales Duties at NBCU

Linda Yaccarino (Image credit: NBCU)

NBCUniversal continued to consolidate its management by naming Linda Yaccarino chair, global advertising and partnerships.

Yaccarino, who had headed national and global advertising sales for all of NBCU’s platforms, will now oversee local ad sales, including the company’s TV stations and regional sports networks.

Franck Comerford, chief revenue officer, president of commercial operations, NBC Owned Stations, and his team will become part of Yaccarino’s group

NBCU said that Yaccarino also will be overseeing a new effort to create a new data strategy unit that will aim to create a unified privacy-safe way of identifying viewers as it pursues new commerce opportunities. A chief data officer is expected to be named soon.

The company’s strategic initiatives group, headed by senior VP Kathy Kelly-Brown, has been placed under Yaccarino’s purview, uniting Comcast Cable and NBCU’s Symphony marketing efforts.

"Linda has done a fantastic job moving the advertising business forward, not just for NBCUniversal, but the industry at large," said Jeff Shell, who has been consolidating the company television operations since becoming CEO of NBCU earlier this year. “I'm excited for her to continue architecting the future of the ad-supported ecosystem and uniting all assets of this company to make us the best possible partner for our customers around the world." 

Yaccarino sent a memo to staff Monday explaining the changes:


I'm thrilled that our family is getting bigger.

First, we're welcoming Frank Comerford and his team of local sales experts to make our broader Global Advertising & Partnerships division truly a one-of-a-kind in this industry. This also means we will have the great opportunity to partner even more closely with Valari Staab, the stations, and the Regional Sports Networks under this new structure. On top of that, Kathy Kelly-Brown's strategic initiatives team will join our team and expand on their incredible work with Symphony, plus we'll be partnering even more closely with John Miller. Finally, we're going to build an entirely new Data Strategy unit that will unite all of NBCUniversal behind a shared information vision.

Please join me in welcoming them all!

These updates come at a time of massive transformation in the global advertising industry. Consumer behavior and corporate convergence are bringing media and technology closer together. And now, so are we.

By organizing our business to reflect the realities of the marketplace and the future that audiences have created, we're able to bolster our One Platform solution and, subsequently, our entire business. Now, from local to global, across cable and broadcast, digital and streaming, NBCUniversal—and only NBCUniversal—can offer audiences and partners an unbeatable combination of deep regional expertise and massive scale, data-driven math and a little bit of magic. 

While there is no doubt we are a content and technology company at our core, we need to keep accelerating our business plans to define entertainment and build the future of advertising. With the addition of these strong teams and new initiatives, we're expanding our offerings for clients while diversifying our business and creating new company-wide opportunities. We're making the right investments to bring that future into focus.

During Wednesday's Office Hours, I'll go into more details and introduce our new team members. But for now, it's important to reiterate: when we transform our team, we transform the company—and the entire industry. 

Thank you,


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.