Tola Murphy Baran

Tola Murphy Baran


Proven track record as a business builder and a brand builder:

  • Launched and managed multiple, highly-profitable new business ventures, each leveraging new media distribution technologies (Online, Satellite TV and Satellite Radio).
  • Created new business vertical opportunity for market-leading Online Video Platform provider.
  • Built a dominant sports presence for a start-up subscription radio venture, leveraging pro and college assets to help drive subscriber growth from 300K to 9M in four years.
  • Founded and was General Manager of NFL Sunday Ticket, the first and most successful premium subscription business in sports history, which today generates $1 billion in NFL annual revenue and is credited with driving explosive growth of DirecTV.
  • Co-founded and managed sales, distribution, trade marketing and PR operations for Viacom Satellite Networks, which generated over $100 million in annual revenue.

Expertise in business development, general management, sales, marketing, branding, advertising, public relations, event planning & promotion, programming acquisition and development, licensing and rights negotiations, e-commerce and sponsorship.



·National Sports Marketing Network (NSMN), NY Chapter Board Member. 2006 to present.

·Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association of America (SBCA), Chairman of the Board of Directors 2000; 1st Vice-Chair 1998-1999; 2nd Vice Chair 1997-1998; Member Finance Committee 1996-2002; Member Board of Directors 1995-2003.

·Fordham University Women’s Cornerstone Council Board Member, dedicated to raising funds and creating opportunities for Fordham’s female athletes. 2005 to present.

·T. Howard Foundation, Member of Board of Directors, 1994 to 2004. Dedicated to promoting internships and employment for women and people of color in the satellite television industry.

·Center for Hope Hospice & Palliative Care, fundraiser 1995 to present. Winner of the 2003 “Making A Difference Award” for volunteer fundraising efforts.

Work History

Work History
2009 - Present


The Holgate Group

Co-Founder of boutique consulting firm, focused on supporting clients in the marriage of media, technology and sports.  Current clients include:

·Brightcove, Inc., the leading Online Video Platform, Cambridge MA. Orchestrated successful entry into Multichannel Video Programming space, a new vertical for Brightcove, to capitalize on industry-wide “TV Everywhere” new business opportunity.  Successfully positioned Brightcove as leader and game-changer with programmers and MVPDs and created new revenue opportunity for Brightcove.

·Stream57, a leading provider of innovative webcasting, comprehensive e-learning and multichannel communication, based in NYC.  Engaged in BD efforts within the entertainment industry.

·Katerco LLC, a manufacturer and marketer of promotional advertising products, based in Clemson, SC.  Engaged in BD efforts within the sports licensing industry.

Mar 2004 - 2009

Senior VP Brand Management

Sirius XM Radio

Summary: I joined Sirius five years ago to establish a new sports department, and launched the NFL, NASCAR, NCAA and other sports properties.In addition, I negotiate programming and marketing rights agreements with sports partners and oversee the relationships.I'm also responsible for developing cooperative marketing agreements with other business partners of our sports properties.

  • Recruited when Sirius had 300K subscribers, 17% share of new subscribers and 26% brand awareness.By 2008, subscribers grew to 9M, new subscriber share to 67% and brand awareness to 78%. Since XM merger (July 2008), subscribers are more than 19M.
  • Built newly-created department to acquire content, establish cooperative relationships with NFL, NBA, NHL, NCAA, and NASCAR, and direct national advertising/marketing efforts to add new subscribers among their fans.
  • Oversaw launch of online direct-to-consumer sales site, which became the company’s third largest source of after-market sales.
  • Negotiated long term programming and marketing agreements with the nation’s top NCAA properties, including Notre Dame, USC, UCLA, Army, Navy and the Collegiate Conference Group of 11 NCAA-member conferences.
  • Created strategic plan for NFL launch that resulted in 19% increase in new retail subscriber share from 38% to 57% in 2 months. Within 6 months, sports rose to the # 1 reason for new subscriptions, with 50% citing sports as a reason for subscribing.Also created NASCAR launch campaign in 2007 that resulted in double digit sales increases.
  • Oversaw marketing campaigns for talk and entertainment category and directed successful subscriber acquisition marketing campaigns at programming partners’ constituents, including Martha Stewart, Cosmo, Blue Collar Comedy, Playboy, the Catholic Channel and other news, political and lifestyle programming.
  • Created marketing partnerships resulting in effective cross promotions and brand awareness with Pepsi, Bank of America, Coors, Visa, Southwest Airlines and others.
1994 - 2003

Senior VP Market Development

Summary: I spent the prior 9 years at the NFL, where I launched and was GM of NFL Sunday Ticket, creating a new revenue stream that exceeded $400 million annually in my final year.I also helped move the NFL into interactivity, streaming and other emerging technologies.Commissioner Tagliabue appointed me to lead a cross-organizational task force to develop a business plan and prototype for the NFL Network.

  • Founder and general manager of the first and most successful premium subscription business in televised sports, “NFL Sunday Ticket.” Full P&L responsibility for $140M net annual business with $34M operating budget.
  • Achieved average annual growth rates of 29% for subscribers and 30% for revenues.
  • Played leading role in contract strategy and negotiation, increasing guaranteed revenues from $20M to $150M to $400M per year.
  • Conceived the distribution strategy for premium sports subscriptions that is still the industry standard.
  • Appointed by Commissioner to lead cross-organizational task force to create strategic/business plan and on-air prototype for the NFL’s first full-time TV network, proving its viability and asset value to League owners, and resulting in decision to launch The NFL Network in 2003.
  • Oversaw the first live, fully interactive NFL Game. (Super Bowl XXXVI on DIRECTV Latin America) and the NFL’s first interactive advertising applications in the U.S.
1981 - 1994

Vice President, Market Development & Industry Relations

Showtime Networks Inc.

Summary: I was recruited to the NFL in 1994 from Showtime Networks, where I had helped pioneer the satellite TV subscription business, which brought Showtime new revenues of over $100 million annually.I oversaw distribution, affiliate relations and marketing and managed a field-based sales and marketing team.

Vice President, Market Development, Viacom Satellite Networks(1986-1994)

·Member of core team that planned and executed the creation of a start-up direct-to-home subscription business, building revenues to over $100M and cash flow to $20M annually.

·Primary responsibility for sales, trade marketing and advertising, field sales & marketing, cable and satellite industry relations, strategy, public and government relations.

·Opened highly profitable new distribution avenue and revenue stream for Pay Per View event business via satellite television.

Director, Corporate and Industry Relations, Showtime/The Movie Channel (1983-1986)

Manager, Trade Public Relations, Showtime/The Movie Channel (1981-1983).

·Directed corporate affairs and trade relations, including strategic planning, press relations/publicity, community relations, speech writing and corporate communications.

·Directed communications for launch and ongoing operation of Viewer’s Choice, the first national Pay Per View network.




Fordham University

Fordham University, New York City, NY, Bachelor of Arts Cum Laude.English major.

WFUV-FM Radio. Host of weekly classical music program, Producer, Reporter, Anchor, Assistant Chief Announcer, Writer/Producer, Board Operator, 3rd-class FCC Radio Telephone Operators’ License with Broadcast Endorsement.