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Volume 20 No. 42
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Former Goldman Sachs partner is new NBA CFO

The NBA has hired former Goldman Sachs partner Jason Cahilly as the league’s executive vice president of strategy and chief financial officer.

Cahilly replaces Carol Sawdye, who left the league in October to become chief financial officer and vice chair of PricewaterhouseCoopers. Cahilly begins his new job Jan. 14.

Cahilly, 42, will report to NBA Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver and will oversee the league’s financial affairs and business planning as well as the financial dealings between the league and its 30 teams.

Jason Cahilly

Title: NBA executive vice president, strategy, and chief financial officer

2000-12: Goldman Sachs, partner and global co-head, media and telecommunications department
1997-2000: Lehman Brothers, vice president, global communications and media group
1995-97: Simpson Thacher & Bartlett, attorney
Education: J.D., Harvard Law School; B.A., Bucknell University

Cahilly left Goldman Sachs in June. In his nearly 12 years at Goldman, he advised the league on deals including the creation of NBA China in 2008. On the team side, he was involved in the sales of the Washington Wizards, Cleveland Cavaliers and former Seattle SuperSonics.

He also was involved in several of Goldman’s major media deals, including General Electric’s sale of NBC to Comcast, and has worked on deals involving Time Warner, Anheuser-Busch and Yahoo.

“I have known Jason for more than a decade, and over the years he has provided [the NBA] advice and insight on a number of domestic and global opportunities,” Silver said. “He has deep experience on the team side as well and is a proven leader with financial management experience across the media and communications industries.”

The NBA did not use a search firm for the hire.

While Cahilly was familiar to Silver and NBA Commissioner David Stern prior to taking the job, he also was interviewed by team owners on the league’s audit committee.

“What attracted me to the league is that it is an amazing global media company that under David and Adam has enjoyed tremendous value creation and yet you can see substantial value increase over time both domestically and globally,” Cahilly said.