SBJ/20090202/This Week's News

Longtime IMGer Kain joining CAA

CAA has hired former IMG co-CEO Bob Kain as strategic adviser to CAA Sports, three days after Kain announced he was leaving the Cleveland Browns, where he served as vice chair and adviser to Browns and English Premier League club Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner.

Kain said his decision to join CAA came after months of discussions with CAA President Richard Lovett, who befriended Kain and IMG’s founder, the late Mark McCormack, more than a decade ago.

“I have known Richard for years and we have talked about doing something together for years,” Kain said.

CAA said in a statement that Kain will work closely with CAA Sports’ management team to create new business initiatives for the agency and its clients, both domestically and internationally. CAA hired Michael Levine, Howard Nuchow and David Rone to lead its sports division in January 2007.

“I am a strategic adviser: I am not anybody’s boss,” Kain said.

He added that he is impressed with how CAA has expanded its sports business since launching it in 2006, by hiring former IMG football agent Tom Condon and former IMG baseball agent Casey Close.

Lovett in a statement said, “Bob’s strategic vision and business acumen have made him one of the most accomplished and well-respected executives in all of sports. He has been a pioneer in defining what a sports agency could be and in shaping a global model for the media and sports industries. We are thrilled to have him join us.”

Kain worked at IMG for 30 years, first as a tennis agent serving clients that included Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi, before rising through the ranks to lead IMG’s North Americas division. He was named IMG co-CEO and president in 2003 after McCormack’s death. Kain left IMG in 2006 and worked for two years as an adviser to Lerner. Sources said that Kain was prohibited under the terms of his contract with IMG to work at a competing sports and entertainment firm but that the noncompete provision has expired.

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