SBJ/March 3 - 9, 2008/Forty Under 40
Published March 3, 2008
Todd Goldstein has three items that appear every day on his list of things to think about. Two of them — L.A. Live and The Home Depot Center — are in his backyard. The other could hardly be farther away.
In mid-February, Goldstein had just returned from his second trip in a month to Beijing, where AEG is building an arena that it will jointly operate with the NBA. The project provides opportunities that even Goldstein, the consummate dealmaker, approaches with wide eyes.
"It's a fascinating country, with more people who play basketball than there are who live in the U.S.," he said. "It's one of the more exciting opportunities to do business in a country that will help define a generation."
That's not to say that Goldstein, AEG's senior vice president for global business development, only thinks about deals for three facilities a day. In fact, the number might be hard to pin down, since he spends much of his time finding new ways to mix and match sponsors and partners with AEG's ever-expanding list of real estate ventures and entertainment properties.
If he can help it, Goldstein doesn't want to sign any partner to a single, simple deal. He looks for ways to leverage dollars across a variety of properties, and to make sure that the money will continue to roll in over the life of a project.
"We call him the Tasmanian Devil," said Tim Leiweke, AEG's chief executive. "I've never seen anyone with so much energy, and he's become the master at creating contractually obligated income."
AEG's many properties not only offer Goldstein a wealth of opportunity, but give him the most satisfaction in his job.
"We literally can approach any company and have some sort of genuine dialogue," he said.