NBA combines marcomms, hires Economou as SVP

New York: The NBA has named Greg Economou SVP of marketing and communications.

New York: The NBA has named Greg Economou SVP of marketing and communications.

Economou, who will report to NBA Entertainment president and COO Adam Silver, will direct the NBA's marketing and brand development and will oversee the league's domestic and international communications functions. He replaces Tim Andree, who left the NBA in January for BASF. However, the position now comes with the expanded duties of centralized coordination of the marketing efforts for each of the three leagues: NBA, WNBA, and NBA Development League.

NBA commissioner David Stern told PRWeek that combining the communications and marketing functions was a move he's sought to make for a while.

"I think that communications and the various outlets that we have are an extraordinary part of defining who we are," Stern said. "And it has been my intention for some time to put the communications and marketing functions under a single umbrella. When you focus on business communications, sports communications, and talk about it on a global basis, you begin to understand how important that is."

Economou said PR will help the league grow its fan base.

"It's a combination of quantity and quality," he said. "With better holistic information about the league, we can have better qualitative PR, and it can be more meaningful for us in terms of shifting attitudes of consumers."

Stern, who said Economou's role is more about coordinating messages than creating more PR, added that the NBA plans to do an inventory of its communications assets.

"Communications is going to play a vital role in helping to keep our record attendance, television, and Internet distribution globalization going forward and increasing," he said.

Stern said Economou would have to "understand all of the various products that we have and how the messages among them can be coordinated."

Economou previously was MD and CEO of Brandthink, a management consulting firm specializing in sports marketing and developing management strategy.

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