SBJ/20090921/This Week's News

USOC opens New York office

The U.S. Olympic Committee last week opened a New York office, giving its marketing department a toehold near some of the nation’s biggest advertising decision-makers along Madison Avenue.

The 3,500-square-foot office, located at 521 Fifth Avenue, will be home to seven full-time employees. It also will be used by USA Track & Field, which will rent an office suite from the USOC large enough to accommodate three to four employees. The USOC marketing department plans to open it to corporate partners and other USOC departments when they visit New York.

USOC’s New York office:
Executive Title
Lisa Baird Chief marketing officer
Jennifer Brown Executive assistant to CMO
Peter Zeytoonjian Managing director, consumer products and licensing
Mitch Poll Managing director, business accounts
Mallika Pereira Manager, technology/media
Rachel Barkan Manager, retail/services
Sarah Cantwell Manager, major gifts

The USOC evaluated a number of locations in New York but ultimately chose a location in midtown because of the site’s proximity to its media partner, NBC, and other sports properties.

“New York real estate is challenging even in this environment,” said Lisa Baird, the USOC’s chief marketer. “We really wanted to find the right place with the right length of term and something really turnkey and ready for us to move into.”

The office space won’t require any construction. Consumer products head Peter Zeytoonjian is charged with decorating the office space and will establish an office that mirrors the style of the USOC’s headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colo., Baird said.

The USOC signed a multiyear lease for the office space. Though Baird doesn’t plan to hire any more employees for the marketing department in New York, she expects the number of people working out of the office will evolve.

“It depends on what happens when we get Chicago (in 2016), if that’s not too bold, and how we’re evolving as the USOC,” she said. “We want to be flexible, and right now we want to take the right steps to be (in New York) and have a beachhead there.”

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