5 minutes with Matt Grandis


Meet the Executive Vice President, Properties in North America

Describe your career in 5 words
Self-Aware, Positive, Persistent, Relationships, & (Lots of) Coffee
Congratulations on being named in SBJ's Forty under 40 list for 2018, a fantastic achievement. When you look back to where it all started, what made you decide to pursue a career in the sponsorship industry?

Coming out of college, I realized I had a passion for the business side of sport. I was fascinated by why brands partner with properties and how to make the connection between the two. For me, there’s that rush when you get the initial meeting, a lengthy courting/negotiation process (unfortunately), and then sometimes all the hard work comes to fruition (or it’s pure luck…) and you’re able to close a deal. That process drives me day in day out.
Having worked in the sponsorship sector for many years, what do you think are the most important factors for rights owners / properties to appeal to the right brands?
You need to know who you are as a rights owner/property. The one size fits all model rarely works anymore for brands, thus rights owners/properties should consistently try to adapt to the marketplace & have a clear understanding of what will drive value for partners.  Be “flexible” which doesn’t necessarily mean “giving in” or lowering your price, but rather being smart. Looking at the big picture and thinking long term vs trying to win the day will help you stand out in this crowded, very competitive marketplace.

As one of the leaders in CSM, North America, what do you think makes CSM stand out as a challenger to some of the big boys? 
Our talent. We have a collection of amazing people from a mixture of some of those aforementioned “big boys” coupled with entrepreneurs that provide a unique combination of diverse institutional knowledge, along with the grit/hustle needed to help set us apart in the marketplace. The talent here fires me up, there is nothing better than being surrounded by smart, great people who all want to work hard for the collective good. 
When not at work, what would we find you doing?
Work, joking (kind of), but these days spending time with my wife, three kids (ages 5, 3, and 1) and our dog. We joke it’s all hands on deck at home, but it really is - hard but amazing at the same time. Besides that, even though my sports teams are mostly bad these days, I still try and catch some games especially with my passion points – soccer, college hoops, and pray that one the day the Jets will be in Super Bowl so my two boys and I can finally get out of the misery that is being a Jets fan (but we’ll probably lose anyway).  As you can see, the only thing I’m not optimistic about are those damn Jets….