Branching out into the corporate arena, tenpercentery Endeavor has hired David Maisel as head of Endeavor’s corporate strategy and business development efforts.
Maisel had for the last two years served as managing director of Chello, Europe’s largest provider of consumer broadband internet services — but is best known for his tumultuous ride as prexy of Livent.
Maisel says his mandate at Endeavor will be threefold: First, to help the company’s existing clients in developing their own business initiatives. Second, to spearhead Endeavor’s own corporate strategy; and finally, to assist entertainment and non-entertainment companies seeking to do business together.
“I feel as if the last 14 years have been leading up to this,” Maisel said.
Maisel started his agency career at Creative Artists Agency as a corporate advisory agent in 1994, working closely with CAA topper Michael Ovitz.
With Ovitz, Maisel orchestrated and brokered deals like Matsushita’s sale of MCA/Universal to Seagram in 1995. He followed Ovitz to the Walt Disney Co., where he worked as director of corporate development and strategic planning during Ovitz’s 18-month tenure as president of the company.
When Ovitz left Disney and subsequently became chief stake-holder in the publicly traded theatrical production company Livent, Inc., Maisel became Livent’s president.
Shortly after taking the post, Livent co-founder Garth Drabinsky was charged with fraud, and Livent filed for bankruptcy.
Maisel stayed on to pilot the wounded company through a restructuring and sale to SFX Entertainment — a stand that allowed its tuner “Fosse,” which went on to win the 1999 Tony for best musical, to play on and recoup its investment.
“I think what I’m most proud of,” said Maisel, in an interview with Daily Variety, “was that we found a way to keep the company together so the shows would be preserved.”
Livent’s other musicals included “Seussical,” which was staged on Broadway, and “The Sweet Smell of Success” which is coming to the stage soon.
In a statement, Endeavor’s partners praised Maisel’s “experience with entertainment and media companies” calling him “a perfect match with the agency” to focus on potential mergers and acquisitions, new ventures, and corporate advisory services.