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CFO Readies for a Smash in Tennis Channel’s Growth

After 14 years at Dick Clark Productions Inc., Bill Simon was ready for a new game, and quickly found himself matched up with the Tennis Channel.


“It was an opportunity to come in and have a big impact and be part of the strategic development,” said Simon. At Dick Clark, he had risen to the position of chief financial officer with a vice president’s title.


As chief financial officer at the Tennis Channel, Simon is responsible for financing and accounting, human resources, information technology and facilities management.


The Tennis Channel has been broadcasting live tournaments, news, one-on-one interviews and game analyses for about two years. Simon’s role will be to prepare the company for expected growth as it builds availability and viewership. The channel’s goal is to have 8 million to 10 million subscribers by the end of this year. It is currently available in 19 of the top 20 markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and Boston. Major cable providers carry the channel in 43 states and 2,900 communities.


“You’ve got to have the right systems in place so when you do grow, so you don’t have to put out fires,” he said.


Though it’s been a while since he picked up a racket, Simon developed his love of the sport at a young age when he competed in Pittsburgh youth games (he remembers watching the Pittsburgh Triangles compete in the World Team Tennis league).


In his free time, he looks forward to his weekly Saturday pick-up basketball game. He’s played with the same group of guys for the past decade, but noted that at 38 he is the youngest and the players’ injuries seem to increase as the years go by. Simon lives in Santa Monica with his wife Kelly, his 5-year-old daughter and 1-year-old son.

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