Range Media Partners Launches Sports Division, Sets Will Funk As President Of Range Sports
Marking another step in expanding its company’s footprint across the industry, Range Media Partners has announced the formation of Range Sports, an athletics-focused division lead by Will Funk, the former Executive Vice President of WarnerMedia. The multi-faceted new venture will work synergistically across Range’s existing departments to produce live and on-demand original sports programming; manage and advise best-in class-sports talent, properties and IP; and invest in the future of sports content and distribution.
As a hub for original content and programming, Range Sports will partner with talent and IP rightsholders to develop and produce original live and unscripted sports content for distribution across broadcast, cable and streaming services. Live events will deliver real-time audiences at scale, while generating multiple revenue streams including media rights, ticket sales and sponsorships. Additionally, Range Sports will have the ability to tap into Range Media Partners’ Unscripted and Scripted entertainment departments and preexisting partnership with A&E Studios to develop nonfiction projects, documentaries and real-time series about the most compelling sports moments, stories, teams and athletes.
“Working at Range Media is a dream come true and the next step in my long career focused on providing sports properties and talent with exceptional growth and distribution opportunities,” said Funk. “The resources and business that Range has established as the leader in management and production is a perfect fit for sports.”
During his 21-year tenure with Turner Sports, Funk and his team were responsible for revenue generating partnerships with the NBA on TNT, MLB on TBS, NHL on TNT and other WarnerMedia Sports assets. Funk also co-managed with CBS the NCAA’s March Madness television and digital advertising and sponsorship sales on CBS, TBS, TNT and truTV and all digital platforms. At Range Sports, Funk will use this expertise to advise television and digital media rights sales on behalf of leagues, teams, governing bodies and other properties, as well as to represent leagues and sporting venues for naming rights, sponsorship and other brand integration opportunities. He will also consult brands with regards to sports strategy and investment, and in collaboration with Point72 Ventures, Range Sports will provide resources to incubate and grow consumer sports businesses.
Following in the tradition of Range Media Partners’ entertainment talent representation, Range Sports will represent current and former athletes, on-air broadcast talent and coaches focusing on marketing, TV/film, broadcasting and endorsements.
“We have had the pleasure of working with Will on various projects over the years, and each time, understood why he is one of the most respected minds in the world of sports IP,” said Range Media co-founding partner Jack Whigham. “The creativity, class and execution he brings to the job is exactly what we aspire for.”
Prior to joining WarnerMedia, Funk served as the Senior Director of Global Media Programs at the NBA, overseeing domestic media sales as well as marketing partner business development, content distribution and licensing. Funk began his career at Madison Square Garden, where he was responsible for advertising and sponsorships across the MSG Arena, MSG Network, New York Knicks, New York Rangers and Radio City Music Hall.
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