Aki Kaneko, a nearly 20-year veteran of Billboard, is joining Oak View Group (OVG) as VP of Sales & Sponsorships. His official start date in June 25 and he’ll report to OVG Media & Conferences President Ray Waddell.
Kaneko arrives from the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group where he most recently served as executive director of entertainment. He joins another Billboard alum, recently appointed VP of Operations Jon Guynn, at OVG.
Kaneko’s responsibilities will include leading sales efforts in international advertising and sponsorship across all OVG media platforms and conferences, which include Pollstar, VenuesNow and SportTechie, along with each affiliate’s website. He’ll also direct sponsorships for the PollstarLive! Conference and awards show, which marks its 30th anniversary in 2019, and the VenuesNow Conference, which is currently being held in Beverly Hills for the second time. Pollstar also recently moved its headquarters from Fresno to Los Angeles.
Said Waddell: “I have known and worked with Aki for many years and know him to be an executive of tremendous vision, integrity, and work ethic, with a deep, strategic understanding of the needs and opportunities within the live entertainment industry. With the leadership of Aki, Jon Guynn and Executive Editor Andy Gensler, we have built a formidable foundation for OVG’s Media & Conferences Division, providing a source of industry leading data, credible content, and vital communication across all platforms, worldwide.”
“Tim Leiweke, Irving Azoff, (OVG President of Business Development) Francesca Bodie and Ray Waddell are disrupting the sports and live entertainment world in innovative and creative ways,” said Kaneko. “I’m going to bring that same forward-looking spirit to the media and conferences space.”