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Volume 21 No. 1
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Peter Guber, co-owner, Golden State Warriors

Not long after former Sony Pictures Chairman Peter Guber joined Joe Lacob in the purchase of the Golden State Warriors in 2010, he began speaking with team executives about the importance of the franchise becoming “digitally fit,” of making sure that everything the team did contemplated the best use of technology. Guber speaks here about that, about being part of the Los Angeles Dodgers ownership group, and about lessons from his entertainment career that apply to sports.

— Compiled by Bill King


Live event content is the holy grail for any network or cable company, and I think it will continue to be.

The value of original video content:
You start off by recognizing that you have a show and you have talent. You have the games; that’s the show. You have the players and the coaches; that’s your cast. You’ve got the ultimate franchise sequel. In movies and with a television series, you’re always looking for that kind of continuity. You want a movie that becomes a franchise and has a sequel, where you can build a loyal following. With sports franchises, you already have that.

What brings that to life: The connector is both the aptitude of the team to be digitally fit and the attitude to recognize that your fans’ engagement before, after and during games is what keeps your product alive.

The right content and the right mix: Video is much stronger than text, but to produce video, you’ve got to be talented. It’s not just about turning on the camera. It’s about turning the camera on what an audience is interested in. It isn’t just aiming the camera at the talent during shoot-around or at some coach either confessing a problem or working on an issue. That’s only part of it. You have to have an over-reaching view of it. How does my audience want to consume these videos? Nobody wants to order the same dish every day, so you have to vary it.

The importance of quality: Whatever you choose to do, quality always wins. The quality of the content. It has to feel real and authentic, and it has to be quality, because they’re seeing quality all the time now, whether it’s on their first or second screen.

Seeing future value: It takes a forward-thinking owner that wants to believe that creating a bundle of assets that are must-have television is going to make your product much more valuable to some of these satellite carriers or network carriers or cable carriers. With the Dodgers, we made a deal [with Time Warner Cable] that is by no means the last of those deals. The value of rights is only going up.