One of the most popular and effective members of the Running media management, Andy Hersam, is not only back working in the sport, but has taken on the role of Executive VP of Media, Competitor Group. Andy was extremely effective as the Publisher of Runners World, where he lead the title for five years. His previous experience at Sports Illustrated served him well, as Andy continued to guide RW on a strong growth curve under his tenure. Andy also supported the professional growth of sport, and the need for a trade group in running, as he was elected to the board of Running USA. Andy continues to serve on the Running USA board.
The media world is changing daily. Major print titles close as publishers try to find profitable models for print, web and digital to bring back some of the revenue lost over the past 18 months. Social networking, twitter, blogging all offer hope, but revenue models in those media cultures are wanting. The Competitor Group has digital, print and event assets that give it some fascinating opportunities. The key will be for Mr. Hersam to bring those assets to the eyes of clients and show them how they can help the clients' marketing message to millions of runners and endurance athletes. Andy Hersam has seen much success with the non-vertical advertisers in his past life. It will be those talents that will be called upon in his new role.
We wish Andy great success and are glad to have him working back in the sport!
A story in Running Insight, dated August 3, 2009 and a press release on Velo News, dated July 23 ( which follows in its entirety) were used with this piece.
Former Runner’s World Publisher to lead Competitor Media Division
Published: Jul. 23, 2009
The Competitor Group (CGI) today announced that Andrew R. Hersam has been named Executive Vice President of Media, effective immediately.
Hersam is an accomplished media executive with over 20 years of managing print, digital, radio, television and event brands. During his five-year tenure as a Rodale executive, Hersam served as Vice President and Publishing Director of Runner’s World Media Group, which he led through an unprecedented period of growth and expansion.
“We are thrilled to have Andy join our team at Competitor,” said Peter Englehart, President and CEO of CGI. “Not only does he bring an enormous wealth of knowledge and media experience, but he carries direct endurance industry expertise combined with a personal passion for the space. Andy is poised to direct the future growth of the publishing, digital and sponsorship operations for our expanding event and media properties.”
"Given my passion for the endurance market, I have closely followed the creation and development of the Competitor Group since its inception,” said Hersam, who will relocate to CGI’s corporate headquarters in San Diego, CA. “Competitor is the leader in engaging and inspiring millions of endurance athletes. No other company offers a more effective and robust opportunity to advertisers. I look forward to leading the company’s media expansion, partnering with both Peter and Scott, and renewing many of my endurance industry relationships.”
Scott Dickey, Competitor Group COO, added “We have spent the past 18 months developing the assets and building the framework from which to deliver truly unique partnerships. Having an executive such as Andy join our team simply affirms the value of our properties and fuels the continued momentum in our organization and throughout the endurance industry.”
Hersam, who most recently served as Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer of Westwood One Inc., brings to CGI an expansive background in both developing traditional and new media assets. At Westwood One, Hersam oversaw over $500 million in radio, TV and digital sales across the company's brand portfolio. Prior to his tenures with Westwood One and Rodale, Hersam spent six years as the New York Advertising Director of Sports Illustrated and eight years at Times-Mirror in a variety of executive positions. He is also an avid endurance athlete and a board member of Running USA, a leading industry association devoted to the growth and success of the running industry in America.
About The Competitor Group
Competitor Group, Inc., headquartered in San Diego, CA, is the leading media and event entertainment company dedicated to the endurance sports industry of running, cycling and triathlons. CGI is a portfolio company of Falconhead Capital and comprised of the following brands: Competitor Magazine, Triathlete Magazine, Inside Triathlon, VeloNews, the Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series, Muddy Buddy and VeloPress. CGI owns and operates 27 national events delivering more than 250,000 professional and amateur participants in 2009. CGI publishes four magazine titles with a combined monthly circulation of over 800,000 and has soft launched an endurance community web presence under competitor.com. Further information about Competitor and its media properties can be found at www.competitor.com .
For more on the sport of running, please check http://www.runningnetwork.com