Agent Tellem leaves SFX for Wasserman Media Group
LOS ANGELES -- Arn Tellem has left SFX and is selling his business to the Wasserman Media Group, taking with him clients that include baseball players Jason Giambi, Hideki Matsui, Nomar Garciaparra and Frank Thomas, and basketball players Jermaine O'Neal and Tracy McGrady.
Tellem's is the second major agent group to depart SFX Baseball, following Randy and Alan Hendricks, who departed in November 2003. Pat Rooney and Fernando Cuza head the remaining baseball group with SFX, which is owned by Clear Channel.
Tellem said he exercised an option last September to leave SFX on Jan. 1.
"We were not part of their core business," he said Friday. "It's a huge behemoth public company. I needed to get my business back and recapture our entrepreneurial spirit."
Wasserman Media Group is headed by Casey Wasserman, the grandson of Lew Wasserman, the former head of MCA and Universal. The company has been involved in sports marketing and naming rights deals, Tellem said.
"We had many breakfast meetings," Tellem said, "but I told him he had me at the first bite of matzoh brei."
Rob Pelinka, who has been with Tellem's group and represents Kobe Bryant, is remaining with SFX.
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press