Agency deal is done

William Morris and Endeavor are now one - a new entity called WME Entertainment that is certain to shake up the talent agency business. Leading the merged company will be Jim Wiatt, the WMA CEO who becomes chairman. Endeavor heads Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell, along with WMA president Dave Wirtschafter, will serve as co-CEOs (good luck with that). From Variety:

WME will be governed by a nine-member board of directors that includes five from the WMA camp (Wiatt, Wirtschafter, publishing head Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, music department chief Peter Grosslight and motion picture lit department head John Fogelman) and four from Endeavor (Emanuel; Whitesell; Rick Rosen, who will run the combined agency's TV department; and Adam Venit).


WMA has a steady cash flow base primed by its lucrative music and touring department, which generates an estimated $80 million annually, plus the legacy profits from decades of rich TV packaging fees on shows ranging from "The Andy Griffith Show" and "The Dick Van Dyke Show" to more contempo hits like "The Cosby show," "Roseanne" and "Everybody Loves Raymond." Endeavor brings the stronger client base among film and TV actors, writers, directors and producers. As one WMA vet observed: "William Morris is cash-rich; Endeavor is client-rich. They need each other."

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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