Randy Falco

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Randy Falco
Born Randel A. Falco
(1953-12-26) December 26, 1953 (age 60)
The Bronx, New York, U.S.
Nationality United States
Occupation President and chief executive officer for Univision Communications Inc.
Known for Former CEO of AOL
Former President of NBC

Randel A. "Randy" Falco (born Dec. 26, 1953) is an American media executive. Falco has been President and CEO of Univision Communications Inc. since June 2011.[1] Before joining Univision in January 2011 as Executive Vice President and COO, he served as Chairman of the Board and CEO of AOL from Nov. 2006 to March 2009. Prior to his tenure at AOL, he spent 31 years at NBC, including serving as the network’s President and COO.[2] Falco was inducted into the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame on October 28, 2013.[3]

Personal life[edit]

Falco, a native of the Bronx, NY, attended Iona College, where he received his bachelor's of business administration in finance in 1975 and his master's of business administration, also in finance, in 1979. He received an honorary doctorate from Iona College in 2001.[4] Randy and his wife Susan have three children.[5] Falco sits on the board of directors of the Ronald McDonald House and the Museum of the Moving Image (New York City).[2]

Career[edit]

NBC[edit]

Falco began his career at NBC in September 1975. In 31 years with the network, he held several managerial positions in finance, technical operations, and corporate strategic planning. From 1986 to 1991, he served as Vice President of Finance and Administration, NBC Sports. In 1993, Falco was named President of NBC's Broadcast and Network Operations division.[6] He oversaw the facilities and operations of the NBC Television Network worldwide, where he oversaw the design and creation of the Today Show's "Window on the World" studio, MSNBC's state-of-the-art broadcast facilities in Secaucus, N.J., and the digital conversion of the NBC Television Network.[7] He also served as a GE officer.[2]

Discovery Communications President and CEO David Zaslav, a former NBC colleague of Falco’s, said, “Don’t ever underestimate Randy Falco. He doesn’t come in raising his voice, he doesn’t pound on the table. He listens, hears the data and moves forward hard.”[8]

NBC-Universal[edit]

Falco played a key role in the NBC-Universal merger, leading him to be named President of the NBC Universal Television Network Group in 2004. The Wall Street Journal described him as an “unassuming executive” who became a “major player in integrating a daunting collection of operations and personalities.”[9]

When the $14 billion deal was signed in 2004, the transaction represented “a professional crescendo for a pair of longtime NBC executives-Chairman and CEO Bob Wright and his No. 2, Randy Falco-who made the deal happen.” [10] Following the merger, Falco combined the ad sales operations of NBCU’s broadcast and cable units – the first major media company to take that approach. Falco said, “What I was trying to do was just create a more user-friendly environment for our customers and also make it easier for us to manage the inventory from within… across all those different platforms.”[11] He was named president and chief operating officer of the NBC Universal Television Group in December 2005.[12] Falco was responsible for the group’s commercial and operational functions, including affiliate relations and Telemundo.[13]

Reverse Affiliate Compensation[edit]

In February 2000, Falco negotiated the first reverse compensation deal by one of the major broadcast networks. The agreement, “an astonishing reversal of the network compensation policy,” was a 10-year, $362 million deal with Granite Broadcasting that turned KNTV into the NBC affiliate serving San Francisco and San Jose. This approach changed the model so that affiliates would pay the networks for their programming – not the other way around, as had been customary. Falco made the arrangement work for both parties by finding “new revenue streams to be shared by network and stations.” [14]

Olympic Games[edit]

Beginning with the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, Falco played a key role in NBC’s ongoing success with the Olympic Games. He worked alongside NBC Sports Chairman Dick Ebersol to secure exclusive NBC coverage for five consecutive Olympic Games: 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008. In his book “Olympic Turnaround,” Michael Payne described the NBC deal to secure the Games as a “coup” that left the other networks “speechless.” The NBC deal with the International Olympic Committee signed 12/12/95 at $2.3 billion for three Games was “the biggest broadcast deal in sports history” at the time.[15]

The Los Angeles Times colorfully described the Olympic deal by saying: “This deal had it all. Speed. Fabulous sums of money. Atlantic crossings on a corporate jet. Clandestine meetings. Double-dealing. And an end game with a spy-like code name: the Sunset Project.” The key to making the deals successful, according to another media report, was “selling huge ad packages over multiple Games.”[16]

Falco served as COO for the 2002 Winter Olympics, the 2000 Summer Olympic, the 1996 Summer Olympics, and the 1992 Summer Olympics,[17] winning multiple Emmy Awards for these broadcasts.[18]

AOL[edit]

After 31 years with NBC, Falco became Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of AOL in November 2006. As CEO he set strategy and oversaw operations as the company transitioned to an advertising-focused business model.[19] In this restructuring, Falco made 16 strategic acquisitions, eliminated $2.5 billion in costs and moved AOL's headquarters from Dulles to Manhattan.[20] The restructuring also included a series of three workforce restructures.[21] In 2007, a year into his tenure at AOL, Falco was named the recipient of the Frank Stanton Award, honoring excellent leadership in the media field.[22]

Under Falco, AOL acquired social networking website Bebo for $850 million in 2008,[23][24][25] but a few months later global financial markets imploded and Bebo's value dropped.[26]

AOL later sold Bebo to Criterion Capital Partners in 2010 for an undisclosed sum which was reportedly under $10 million.[27][28] In 2009, Falco was replaced as CEO by Google Ad Chief Tim Armstrong.[29] At the time of his departure, AOL’s programming sites had exhibited growth in unique visitors for two years and many of its sites were in the top five in their categories.[30]

Univision Communications Inc.[edit]

Falco has been President and CEO of Univision Communications Inc. (UCI) since June 2011[31] after starting as Executive Vice President and COO for Univision in January 2011. Falco sits on the board of directors of Univision Communications Inc.

As CEO, Falco has said he is focused on making UCI, which is acknowledged by Business Insider as an “extremely important media brand,”[32] the most heavily engaged media brand.[33] Under his leadership, Univision has undergone a company-wide expansion that has included the launch of new networks, including Univision tlNovelas, Univision Noticias, and Univision Deportes,[34] which features soccer matches from the Mexican Primera División and Ligue 1. In 2013, Univision announced the launch of El Rey, a new network geared towards young-adult audiences led by Robert Rodriguez.1. [35] That year Univision also rebranded its TeleFutura network into UniMás, which targets males ages 18 to 35, broadcasts telenovelas, soccer events, reruns of classic shows and feature films.[36]

Univision’s Galavisión remains the No. 1 Spanish-language cable network.[37] Under Falco, Univision has also forged a partnership with Hulu;,[38] started UVideos, a digital online network for streaming content; acquired exclusive multi-year rights to Mexican professional football club Chivas De Guadalajara[39] of the Liga MX; and launched several new apps and websites[40] to broaden the distribution of its content across new platforms.[41]

In addition, under Falco, Univision celebrated its 50th anniversary in the fall of 2012 by unveiling a new brand logo and a new tagline identifying Univision as the “Hispanic Heartbeat of America.”[42] In July 2013, Univision announced its quarterly earnings were $40.7 million, 28 percent higher than in 2012. “Our aggressive push to take share from the English-language networks is working,” Falco said.[43]

Univision News[edit]

During Falco's tenure, Univision has expanded its news offerings to Latino audiences. In the summer of 2013, Univision established a joint venture with ABC News to launch "Fusion", a 24-hour, English-language cable news network.[44] The news division of Univision has increased its emphasis on investigative journalism[45] for which it has attained several recognitions for journalistic excellence, such as the 2012 Peabody Award and IRE Award[46] for its “Fast and Furious” investigation,[47] two Emmy Lifetime Achievement Awards,[48] the Cronkite Award for Excellence in Political Journalism[49] and several prestigious awards for five documentaries produced by the Investigative and Documentary units. Falco was also instrumental in the first Presidential “Meet the Candidates” forums targeted to Hispanic audiences, which featured Presidential Candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney in September 2012 on Univision.[41]

Univision ratings milestones[edit]

In 2013, Univision saw significant ratings milestones. In the February sweeps, the network came in fourth place for the first time with adult demographics while NBC came in fifth.[50] In the July sweeps, Univision came in first.[51]

Until 2013, no traditional American network had been beaten during sweeps. Falco said, “Wrapping up July – during a time when other networks are investing more than ever in summer programming – as the No. 1 network among both Adults 18-49 and 18-34 for the first time, is making history.”[52]

Univision President of Content Distribution Tonia O’Connor said, “Randy has transformed Univision from a Spanish-language television leader to a force in the media landscape. Univision has a lot of momentum in all areas of the business, and make no mistake—it’s all because of Randy.” [53]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Schechner, Sam; De Cordoba, Jose (June 29, 2011). "Univision Elevates Operating Chief to CEO". The Wall Street Journal. 
  2. ^ a b c "Time Warner Inc: Randy Falco". Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved 2012-09-21. 
  3. ^ "23rd Annual Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame: Randy Falco President and Chief Executive Officer Univision Communications Inc.". Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame. Retrieved 2013-09-03. 
  4. ^ "Randy Falco". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 25, 2012. 
  5. ^ "Randy Falco". NNDB. September 3, 2013. 
  6. ^ Crupi, Anthony (June 29, 2011). "Former NBC Exec Randy Falco Named Head of Univision". Adweek. 
  7. ^ "Latin Media & Entertainment Commissioner". NYC.gov. Retrieved 2012-02-26. 
  8. ^ Malone, Michael (October 28, 2013). "Randy Falco, President & CEO, Univision Communications". ‘’Broadcasting & Cable’’. 
  9. ^ Nelson, Emily; Flint, Joe (September 2, 2003). "Quiet Executive To Help Merge NBC Universal". The Wall Street Journal. 
  10. ^ NBC Universal Looks Forward; Peacock, VUE Say 'I Do' for $14 Bil Jay Sherman 17 May 2004 Television Week
  11. ^ Lafayette, Jon (May 30, 2005). "NBCU SOLD ON ONE-STOP SHOP FOR NETWORK, CABLE AD SALES". Television Week. 
  12. ^ "New Chief: Falco Soars to Top at Univision". CableFAX. June 30, 2011. 
  13. ^ Thielman, Sam (June 29, 2011). "Univision taps Randy Falco as CEO". Variety. 
  14. ^ Source: Broadcasting & Cable, 2/21/2000 by Steve McClellan
  15. ^ Payne, Michael (2006). Olympic Turnaround. Praeger. p. 63. ISBN 0275990303. Retrieved September 3, 2013. 
  16. ^ McClellan, Steve (June 25, 2000). "NBC Goes for the Gold". Broadcasting & Cable. 
  17. ^ Ariens, Chris (June 29, 2011). "Randy Falco Upped to CEO of Univision". Mediabistro.com. 
  18. ^ "Randy Falco President and Chief Executive Officer". Univision. Retrieved April 10, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Randy Falco Named Chairman and CEO of AOL LLC" (Press release). Time Warner Inc. November 15, 2006. Retrieved November 15, 2006. 
  20. ^ Mermigas, Diane (March 15, 2009). "Randy Falco: There Is More to AOL's Story". Seeking Alpha. 
  21. ^ Kaufman, Rachel (March 11, 2009). "AOL Exec: ‘Why Randy Falco Gets To Keep His Job Is A Mystery To A Lot Of People’". Mediabistro.com. 
  22. ^ "Past Luncheons". CenterforCommunication.org. Retrieved February 6, 2012. 
  23. ^ Edgecliffe, Andrew. (2008-03-13) / In depth – AOL to ‘supercharge’ Bebo revenues. Ft.com. Retrieved on 2013-01-03.
  24. ^ "AOL acquires Bebo social network". BBC News. 2008-03-13. Archived from the original on 15 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-13. 
  25. ^ "AOL to 'supercharge' Bebo revenues". Financial Times (London). 2008-03-13. Archived from the original on 14 March 2008. Retrieved 2008-03-13. 
  26. ^ Thomson, Iain (July 2, 2013). "British Bebo founder buys back social network for $849m profit". The Register. 
  27. ^ "Bebo sold by AOL after just two years". BBC News. 2010-06-17. Archived from the original on 17 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-17. 
  28. ^ "AOL Sells Bebo to Criterion for Less Than $10 Million". Bloomberg Businessweek. 2010-06-17. Archived from the original on 19 June 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-18. 
  29. ^ Semuels, Alana (March 13, 2009). "AOL chief Falco to be replaced by Google's Armstrong". Los Angeles Times. 
  30. ^ "Tim Armstrong Named Chairman and CEO of AOL" (Press release). AOL Inc. March 12, 2009. Retrieved March 12, 2009. 
  31. ^ "Randy Falco Named President and Chief Executive Officer of Univision" (Press release). Univision Communications. June 29, 2011. Retrieved June 29, 2011. 
  32. ^ Frommer, Dan (August 11, 2011). "10 News Brands That Will Still Matter In 10 Years". Business Insider. 
  33. ^ Szalai, Georg (June 29, 2011). "Univision's New Chief Randy Falco Reveals Plans, Challenges to Become No. 1 Broadcast Network (Q&A)". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  34. ^ James, Meg (January 9, 2012). "Dish Network to distribute new Univision channels". Los Angeles Times. 
  35. ^ "Univision Communications and El Rey Network Announce Strategic Partnership, Unveil Upcoming Scripted Series" (Press release). Univision Communications, Inc. May 14, 2013. Retrieved September 3, 2013. 
  36. ^ Ellingson, Annlee (December 3, 2012). "Univision plays the hipster card". L.A. Biz. Retrieved December 5, 2012. 
  37. ^ "Galavisión Continues Its Run As No. 1 Spanish-Language Cable Network" (Press release). TV By the Numbers. October 2, 2012. Retrieved September 3, 2013. 
  38. ^ Schechner, Sam (October 24, 2011). "Univision Plans to Expand to Compete in a Tough Market". The Wall Street Journal. 
  39. ^ Reynolds, Mike (July 20, 2012). "Univision Deportes Scores Multiyear Rights Deal to Chivas de Guadalajara". Multichannel News. 
  40. ^ Tornoe, Juan (January 9, 2012). "Univision Launches ‘Noticias’ Spanish-Language News App For iPhone, Android". HispanicTrending.com. 
  41. ^ a b Guthrie, Marisa (October 26, 2012). "At 50 Years Old, How Univision Owns the Hispanic Audience". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  42. ^ Guthrie, Marisa (October 17, 2012). "Univision Unveils New Logo, First Tagline (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  43. ^ Szalai, Georg (July 25, 2013). "Univision Communications Second-Quarter Earnings Rise". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  44. ^ ABC News and Univision Announce New Cable Network Will be Called Fusion - ABC News
  45. ^ Edgecliffe-Johnson, Andrew (April 12, 2013). "Univision of the Future". Financial Times. 
  46. ^ Investigative Reporters and Editors - 2012 IRE Award winners
  47. ^ 72nd Annual Peabody Awards: Complete List of Winners
  48. ^ Univision’s Jorge Ramos and Maria Elena Salinas to Get Lifetime Achievement Emmy
  49. ^ Cronkite Award 2013 Winners Announced
  50. ^ Vega, Tanzina; Elliott, Stuart (May 14, 2013). "Univision Resets Sights After a Ratings Victory". The New York Times. 
  51. ^ Murphy, Eamon (July 6, 2012). "Univision Bests the Big Four in July Sweeps Ratings Contest". Daily Finance. 
  52. ^ "Univision Will Set a Milestone as No. 1 Network in Any Sweep Among Both Adults 18-49 and Adults 18-34 Ahead Of 2nd Place Fox By Double-Digits" (Press release). Univision Communications Inc. July 22, 2013. Retrieved September 3, 2013. 
  53. ^ Malone, Michael (October 28, 2013). "Randy Falco, President & CEO, Univision Communications". ‘’Broadcasting & Cable’’. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Jonathan Miller
CEO of AOL
2006–2009
Succeeded by
Tim Armstrong