Cablefax The Magazine - April 2017 - 15

17. BILLIONS BOYS
Matthew
C. Blank
Chairman
Showtime Networks
Years in Cable: 41
Education: University of
Pennsylvania's Wharton
School of Business;
Barcuh College
David Nevins
President & CEO
Showtime Networks
Years in Cable: 7
Education: Amherst
College
One Word that Best
Describes Me: Curiosity
With a compelling current lineup-including
its highest-rated new series " Billions " -and
strong overseas sales of its original programming,
Showtime this year stacked up to be a
property Bobby Axelrod would want a piece
of. Blank, who's been at the net since 1988,
is adept at fostering strong relationships with
current distribution partners and forging new
18. GO ROBOT
Dave Howe
President, Strategy &
Commercial Growth
NBCUniversal Cable
Entertainment
Years in Cable: 21
Education: BA Hons
German French, Reading
University (U.K.)
One Word that Best Describes Me:
Adventurous
Jeff Wachtel
Chief Content Officer
NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment
President
Universal Cable Productions & Wilshire
Studios
Years in Cable: 16
Education: BA, Yale
One Word that Best Describes Me: Provocative
NBCU Cable Entertainment has a pair of stalwart
stewards in Howe and Wachtel. As each has
Cablefax: The Magazine
alliances. And with Nevins at the wheel, digital
growth continues to be a big Showtime story; its
streaming service this past year grew to more
than one million subscribers with launches on
platforms including Amazon Channels and Samsung
Smart TVs, and in a host of international
markets. Nevins also amplified the programming
surrounding the 2016 presidential election this
year by creating " The Circus, " and greenlit the hit
Stephen Colbert live election night special.
Blank Q&A
The best thing about fast broadband is...
OTT options
What are the top three qualities you look for
in a hire? Intensity, curiosity, smarts.
If President Trump tweeted about you, he
would say...HUGE!!!
How do you celebrate your birthday? Dinner
at Peter Luger with family.
What product or service could you not live
without? iPhone.
How long is your morning commute? 15
minutes.
Favorite Saturday morning cartoon from
your childhood? " Heckle + Jeckle. "
Last show I watched not on my networks:
" Bull "
settled into his elevated role-Howe overseeing
strategy and Wachtel steering content across the
10 entertainment networks-strong results continue
to bubble up. Howe's expertise in exploring
new technologies to optimize the company's content
and forging business partnerships is paying
off in a number of inroads. The fruits of Wachtel's
labors also shined during the past year. For
one, Universal Cable Productions' " Mr. Robot "
became a critical and fan favorite, ushering in a
new direction in programming for USA Network.
With Wachtel now also sitting atop the centralized
scripted content house, look for more UCP
programming to fuel not only the NBCU Cable
portfolio but other networks as well.
Howe Q&A
Three years from now, what do you hope has
been invented? A self-emptying dishwasher.
If President Trump tweeted about you, he
would say... " It's a beautiful thing. "
What product or service could you not live
without? My Evernote app.
Favorite Saturday morning cartoon from
your childhood? " Scooby-Doo "
April 2017
Nevins Q&A
What inspires you most about this industry?
The opportunity to work with the greatest
storytellers on earth.
The best thing about fast broadband is... The
ability to binge your favorite Showtime series.
What are the top three qualities you look for
in a hire? Intensity, leadership and a curious
intelligence.
Which TV family is most like your own? The
Bluths.
If President Trump tweeted about you, he
would say... I love " The Circus " and I love " Billions, "
keep up the good work. Not sad!
What product or service could you not live
without? My iPad.
How long is your morning commute? 18
minutes.
Favorite Saturday morning cartoon from
your childhood? Pink Panther.
What does the future look like for skinny
bundles and flexible packaging? Very rosy.
Last show I watched not on my networks:
Rewatching " Mad Men. "
Favorite podcast: The Slate podcast The Moment
hosted by Brian Koppelman. ■
Last show I watched not on my networks:
" Homeland "
Wachtel Q&A:
What inspires you
most about this
industry? Let's
remember that what
we get to do every day
is tell stories.
Three years from
now, what do you hope has been invented?
Teleportation.
What are the top three qualities you look for
in a hire? Passion, intelligence, curiosity.
How do you celebrate your birthday? Dinner
at Dan Tana's with my family.
How long is your morning commute? 10
minutes!!!
Favorite Saturday morning cartoon from
your childhood? " Rocky & Bullwinkle "
Last show I watched not on my network:
" National Treasure " on Hulu.
Best way to spend a Saturday night: At the
movies with my wife. ■
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