Marvin Goldsmith, 58, president of advertising sales for the ABC Network, will retire in August and move into a consulting role, according to media executives. He will be succeeded by Mike Shaw, currently exec VP-national sales manager.
ABC has soared to the No. 1 position among broadcast networks in household ratings and adults 18-to-49-years-old, largely on the strength of the ubiquitous game show "Who Wants to be a Millionaire."
GOING OUT ON TOP
"Everybody wants to go to out when they are on top," said Bill Croasdale, president of national TV programming for Initiative Media North America, Los Angeles. "Marvin has done a fantastic job even through the company's lean times."
Neither Mr. Goldsmith nor an ABC spokeswoman would comment on the anticipated move. Although unrelated, it comes on the heels of the departure of Patricia Fili-Krushel, who recently left her post as president of ABC Television Network to be president-CEO of the consumer division of Healtheon/WebMD.
Mr. Shaw moved to ABC in July 1998 from another Walt Disney Co. division, Buena Vista Television Advertising Sales. In that role, he ran a syndication sales division that sold first-run shows such as "Live with Regis & Kathie Lee," as well as off-network fare such as "Roseanne" and "Third Rock From the Sun."
Mr. Goldsmith is a well-regarded, veteran ABC sales executive who was known for his tough negotiating style.