EVP, Content Distribution
It’s hard to find someone in the industry who doesn’t know Brad Samuels. And it’s even harder to find someone who doesn’t like him. That’s not only because he possesses incredible networking and people skills; it’s also because he’s a skilled affiliate sales executive who enters every negotiation with an eye toward finding common ground. Consider this: Since joining Ovation in 2012, Samuels has already added more than 10 million new subs to the net’s distribution base, and he’s far from done. In 2014, Ovation exceeded 52 million households, a 23% increase over 2013, and extended its HD product to an additional 21 million MVPD subscribers. That’s impressive. Perhaps it’s no wonder that Samuels manages to get things done: He has been making connections and learning the ropes since 1993 when he started at Comedy Central where he led affiliate relations until 2003 and later brought his skills to MSG Media and TV One before landing at Ovation. When Time Warner Cable dropped Ovation for a year in 2013, it was Samuels who kept carriage negotiations alive and eventually won reinstatement in January 2014, with incremental increases in previous carriage levels. We think he deserves a standing O.