Sponsor Content Above the Clutter with Pete Krainik
Episode Four: St. Louis Cardinals
Brought to you by: IBM
Name: David Schulte
Who he is: President of Firm Brands at L.A.-based talent management and entertainment outfit The Firm. He joined the company in 2000.
Where he's from: Had a senior executive role for five years at Jerry Leigh Entertainment, an L.A.-based entertainment/lifestyle licensing company, doing significant business with Walt Disney Co., Dreamworks SKG, and Warner Brothers. Prior to that, Schulte worked at Kikomo, a licensed apparel company, for three years based in New York.
%%PULLQUOTE_RIGHT%% What he's done: Spearheaded acquisition of Pony Sneakers two years ago, in which the Firm subsequently relinquished day-to-day management but retains a 40% stake. Also has led the charge in the joint venture with Richard Branson for the Virgin Drinks business, which will be launched in October with a major retailer on board.
What's next: "I want to make 2-3 more acquisitions of what I call great brands with bad balance sheets. Our focus is to become an LVMH of pop culture, that is have five to six brands in our stable that are relevant to the 18-to-24-year-old demographic that we know. We can utilize our expertise in message communication to grow the value in a short amount of time."
Stock-in-trade: "Innovative and unique methods to reach the elusive 18-to-24-year-old demo is the true value of our division. We spent $1.4 million on marketing on Pony last year but it probably looked like a $50 million campaign."