East Carolina University alumnus Matt Hege said interning at Greenville television station WNCT and then working as advertising director of the “East Carolinian” student newspaper taught him everything he needed to know to start a Broadway-themed cable TV channel. The MBA he also earned at ECU came in handy this week while negotiating the sale of the channel to an investor for a small fortune, he said.
“It’s all the same fundamentals,” Hege said Thursday, a day after he finalized the sale of the Broadway Channel to New York theater mogul John Gore. Hege declined to release financial details of the transaction.
“The real opportunity for me to understand the potential I had came from my work at the ‘East Carolinian,’” Hege said Thursday. “To go out and negotiate the deal for a quarter-page ad–that is real world stuff. When I realized I could do that, then the sky was the limit.”
The Broadway Channel, which Hege and his father started in 1998, is carried on most New York area cable systems and also is available in more than 40,000 hotel rooms in the Big Apple. It also is available over streaming media services.
Hege is executive producer of most of the shows airing on the Broadway Channel, including “Broadway Previews,” “Broadway on Tour,” “Las Vegas Previews,” “West End Previews,” “What’s Hot on Broadway” and the series “Broadway Profiles.”
Gore owns Key Brand Entertainment (KBE), which is widely known as the owner of the ticket-sales website Broadway.com. KBE also owns Broadway Across America, which manages the touring productions of Broadway shows.
Hege, who completed an undergraduate degree in communication in 1994 and returned for an MBA in 2000, will join the Key Brand management team with a continued focus on the Broadway Channel.
Hege lives in Miami where the channel’s corporate offices are located.