TheGrill Welcomes Tubi and Awesomeness Leaders, Media Investors to 2019 Conference

Tubi chief content officer Adam Lewinson, Awesomeness co-head Shelley Zimmerman, media investors Jeff Berman and Raina Kumra and “Sorry to Bother You” producer Nina Yang Bongiovi are joining TheWrap’s ninth annual TheGrill conference on June 5 at The London West Hollywood.

Now in its 10th year, the digital-first news site TheWrap is bringing a new approach to its most prestigious conference, offering three tracks concentrating on technology, innovation and entertainment.

Lewinson and Zimmerman will discuss the rapid rise of streaming, while Berman and Kumra lead a roundtable with Refinery29 President Amy Emmerich among investors and digital entertainment entrepreneurs. Yang Bongiovi will lead a roundtable among leading independent producers.

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TheGrill will host top-tier executives and award-winning journalists in deep conversations about the change that is transforming the entertainment and media industries.

Bongiovi, Lewinson, Berman, Kumra and Zimmerman join a lineup that already includes Hello Sunshine CEO Sarah Harden, investment banker Jason Rapp and Conde Nast Entertainment President Oren Katzeff.

Other keynote speakers will be announced in the coming days.

Also participating is an award-winning panel of daring cinematographers and producers like “Free Solo” executive producer Shannon Dill,”Life Below Zero” field producer Crofton Diack, “Life Below Zero” cinematographer Benji Lanpher, “Hostile Planet” executive producer Guillermo Navarro and “Hostile Planet” director of cinematography David Reichert.

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These experts will provide insights with the following panels:

  • M&A: Exits, Outcomes and Success  TheGrill Welcomes Tubi, Awesomeness Leaders, Media Investors to 2019 Conference with Jason Rapp and Sarah Harden – Thoughts from a builder, a buyer and a banker on the latest mergers and acquisitions.
  • Streaming Steps Up with Shelley Zimmerman, Oren Katzeff and Adam Lewinson – The world of content has reached an inflection point as streaming services proliferate, expanding consumer appetite across the board. The CEOs of companies that are leading this consumer sea change debate strategy and how they stand out in this competitive new space.
  • Daring Nature: Documenting Extremes – Presented by National Geographic – Creators of high-risk environmental films share the risks and rewards of documenting the planet.
  • Tearing Down Bias with Brie Miranda Bryant – A conversation with decision-makers on how to progress diversity from the top down.
  • Silicon Beach Roundtable with Raina Kumra, Jeff Berman and Amy Emmerich – A peer to peer conversation between 30 CEOs and Financiers about the challenges and opportunities facing digital entertainment start-ups and not-so-start-ups. Venture and other sources of capital offer their views on the state of the funding marketplace.
  • Producers Roundtable with Nina Yang Bongiovi – The industry’s top producers come together to debate how a reconfigured Hollywood is changing the way business gets done.
  • Innovators List and Panel – An annual panel that highlights those in entertainment, media and tech industries who have disrupted their fields in the past year and challenged what it means to be an artist or creator in that space.

Be sure to visit TheGrill website to stay up to date with the latest announcements and speakers. For tickets to the event, visit the WrapPRO ticket page and receive an annual WrapPRO membership with the purchase.

Interested in sponsoring TheGrill? Email sarah.lindsay@thewrap.com for more information and sponsorship packages.

Have a speaker you would like to suggest? Email TheWrap at eventmarketing@thewrap.com with a short bio and headshot.

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Viacom is in advanced discussions to purchase AwesomenessTV, the youth-focused digital media company, for a steep discount on its previous valuation, a person with knowledge of negotiations told TheWrap.

The price tag would fall well below the $650 million AwesomenessTV was valued at in 2016, when Verizon bought a 24.5 percent cut. Bloomberg first reported the potential buyout could be about $300 million, but a person familiar with the deal said that figure is much higher than is being discussed.

Comcast owns a 51 percent stake in Awesomeness, which it grabbed from Dreamworks as part of its buyout in 2016. Hearst owns the remaining 24.5 percent of the company.

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The push for AwesomenessTV is part of Viacom CEO Bob Bakish’s push to compete on the digital front. Viacom bought VidCon, the online video conference beloved by teens, earlier this year.

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