Personal Best: Ben Berchuck
Best pitch presenter you’ve ever seen:
My former colleague Katie Bynum at Wasserman. I have never forgotten the incredible story she created and delivered in response to an agency RFP to manage Home Depot’s sports sponsorship portfolio.
Best sports marketing campaign (that wasn’t yours):
NBC’s overall Premier League marketing in the U.S. over the past decade... particularly the original Ted Lasso concept they debuted in 2013 appealing to both hardcore and new fans, way before the TV show.
Best agency (that isn’t yours):
Since I can’t choose my old team at Wasserman, I would have to say Seven League. I am always impressed by Richard Ayers’ and Lewis Wiltshire’s views on the industry and it has been great to see their client work and overall growth the past few years.
Best young industry talent:
Look out for Ben Root, a former Meta/Facebook colleague who joined us straight out of university and is
now at the NFL.
Best sporting event attended:
When I was younger, Arsenal v. Blackburn @ Highbury as a 15-year-old. Finally getting to experience a Premier League game in person was a formative experience and pushed me towards a career in the industry. As an adult, any time I can take my kids to a game at a great venue with an exciting atmosphere that hopefully gives them that same experience – recent adventures include college basketball at Duke
University and Benfica’s home opener last August.
Best sporting event on TV:
Men’s and Women’s World Cups – amazing production, highest stakes, and drama in every minute.
Best brand ambassador:
Based on the amount of $ being spent on Prime energy drinks in my house, it would have to be Logan Paul and KSI!
Best industry event or conference:
SportsPro OTT Summit Madrid – bonus points because the typical conference lunch of sandwich/salad was replaced by massive paellas!
Best film containing a scene depicting the sports business:
I was studying abroad in Spain during the first Galácticos era at Real Madrid and loved watching “The Figo Affair” on Netflix. The amount of footage it showed of the negotiations and behind the scenes maneuvering was incredible.
Best book recommendation:
The New Yorker writer William Finnegan’s “Barbarian Days” – a memoir about his life and surfing around the world.
Best bar or pub:
Taberna Tempranillo in Madrid. Closer to home, my local Larchmont Tavern in New York.
Han Dynasty and Xian Famous Foods in New York City.
Best holiday resort:
Ao Nang in Thailand
Best box set:
Best influence on your career:
Gary Stevenson. He has been an executive at the NBA, PGA TOUR, Pac-12, MLS, Wasserman (and more) and his “Business of Sports” course at Duke University helped launch my career.
Best dinner companions (min 4, max 6):
Any group of international sports business execs with great stories to share – one of the best parts of the
job at Meta/Facebook has been spending evenings with people like Peter Hutton, Rhys Beer, Melissa Lawton, Kike Levy, and many others to learn from their amazing career journeys. On the celebrity side, I would love to have dinner with comedians like Larry David, Dave Chappelle, David Mitchell, and Ricky Gervais – just to listen to the conversation!
Best job in the sports biz:
Whoever holds the largest budget to buy rights!
Best professional regret:
No regrets – use any past choices or experiences to help make decisions at future fork in the road moments for your career.
Best skill you most covet:
The ability to memorize names when meeting a large group of people at events.
Best trait you admire in others:
Quick communication – some of the most successful and busiest people I know are also always the fastest to respond to an email or text.
Best overrated virtue:
Assuming extroverts or the most talkative people at the table are the leaders – we need more introverts in charge!
Using the power of sports to inspire and connect people all around the world with life-changing experiences and the content they care about most!