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Behind the scenes with the Dodgers, Flyers and 49ers

This week, learn from the best at Concordia’s 21st student-run John Molson Sports Marketing Conference
November 1, 2016
By Salim Valji

If you want to learn all about the latest hockey TV agreements, or how big teams keep their fans coming back for more, some of the best in the biz will be in Montreal from November 3 to 5 for the John Molson Sports Marketing Conference (JMSM)

Included in the lineup are several prominent North American sports executives with expertise ranging from broadcast rights to marketing to trade negotiations.

Scott Moore (president of Sportsnet and NHL partnerships for Rogers Media), Ned Colletti (senior advisor for the Los Angeles Dodgers) and Paul Holmgren (president of the Philadelphia Flyers) are three of the big names who will grace the stage at the Marriott Chateau Champlain this week to provide a glimpse behind the bleachers.

The conference is entirely organized by John Molson School of Business (JMSB) students. JMSM committee president Kathleen Couture says she and her fellow teammates are excited about this year’s edition of the three-day event, which is celebrating its 21st anniversary this year.

“Organizing and executing a conference of this scale takes a lot of commitment, drive and passion,” says the undergraduate who’s majoring in finance.

“Over the past six months, the executive team and I have been hard at work finalizing all the details. There is a lot of planning that goes on behind the scenes.”

The big 4 represent

This year organizers focused on bringing in a variety of speakers from across the sports landscape, including industry members from the four largest North American sports leagues.

In 2015, the conference introduced speaker workshops. The sessions were held in a classroom-like group setting that allowed for more connection between presenters and attendees. In one entertaining example, Colletti used John Molson School of Business alumnus Steve Lyberopoulos (BComm 15) in his demonstration on negotiating tactics.

This week’s conference will offer further opportunities to learn in a close-knit environment, with the LA Dodgers advisor again providing instruction. Concordia marketing alumnus Jordan Nashen (BComm 09), NHL Players Association–certified agent David Ettedgui and Miami Heat executive Sonia Harty will also be hosting workshops.  

The conference kicks off on Thursday with its opening ceremonies, followed by the first presentation: Tim Zenner and Jared Kozinn (Detroit Lions), Jamie Brandt (San Francisco 49ers) and Larry Hall (Indianapolis Colts) will speak on ticket selling.

On Friday morning, Andrew Nicholson (Sacramento Kings) and Lisa Braun (Cincinnati Reds) will focus on the digital era and marketing to the 21st-century fan. 

From the gender imbalance to the Presidents’ Club

The “Leveling the Playing Field” presentation will feature Harty and Angela LaChica (LaChica Sports) talking about the gender imbalance in the sports industry.

One of the biggest sessions will take place on Saturday morning, when Holmgren and Minnesota Timberwolves president Chris Wright take part in The Presidents’ Club panel.

Later in the afternoon, Moore will present on sports broadcast rights, and Brian Killingsworth, chief marketing officer for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and John Vidalin, executive vice-president and chief revenue officer for the Miami Heat, will take attendees behind the scenes of their professional lives.

The JMSM conference attracts students from across North America, bringing them a taste of what Montreal and Concordia have to offer. In the past, attendees have come from as far away as the universities of British Columbia and Alberta.

“The main objective for the conference has always been to bridge the gap between students and the sports business industry,” Couture says.

Purchase tickets for the 2016 John Molson Sports Marketing Conference.

Find out more about Concordia’s John Molson School of Business.


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