WarnerMedia and NBCU Ad Sales Chiefs on Upfront Progress and Their Top Cannes Priorities

Donna Speciale and Mark Marshall also look ahead to next year’s big events

Video: Nick Gardner / Editor: Josh Rios

Cannes Lions isn’t just for marketers and agencies anymore: It has increasingly become an essential stop for many of TV’s top ad sales chiefs. Even though they’re in the thick of upfront talks, several of them still made time for the festival, including Donna Speciale, president of WarnerMedia ad sales, and Mark Marshall, president of advertising and client partnerships, NBCUniversal. Speciale and Marshall—who is overseeing the NBCU upfront alongside Laura Molen, also president of advertising and client partnerships—talked with Adweek about their top priorities at this year’s festival, juggling Cannes with upfront talks (“we are in the heart of it,” said Speciale of negotiations) and some of their big 2020 events: the Tokyo Olympics on NBCUniversal (“we actually sold more in this upfront than we ever have in the past,” said Marshall) and WarnerMedia’s upcoming streaming service.

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