Ryman Hospitality Properties has hired Michael Guth as chief operating officer for its Entertainment segment.
In this role, Guth will oversee all operations at the Grand Ole Opry, Ryman Auditorium and WSM 650 AM, including the retail, food & beverage and marketing departments that support these operations as well as the new venues the company has in the planning phase.
Colin Reed, chairman and chief executive officer of Ryman Hospitality Properties, said, “We are thrilled to have Michael on board as we enter into an important phase of growth for the Entertainment side of our business. Michael brings a wealth of operations, marketing and business development expertise to this new role for our Company. With his addition to our senior leadership team, we are creating the infrastructure we need to support the recent growth our Entertainment segment has experienced and also to accelerate the strategic initiatives we have outlined as part of our future plans for this business.”
Guth’s most recent role was chief operating officer for The Bleachers Corporation, a global digital media startup specializing in HD production and streaming for sports and entertainment events.
Prior to The Bleachers Corporation, Guth spent eight years as executive vice president of sales and marketing for The Madison Square Garden Company, where he was responsible for developing the overarching consumer vision, sales strategy and sponsor integration plan throughout the facility’s award-winning $1 billion transformation.
Guth began his career developing sales and marketing strategies for the New York Mets Baseball Club and The Coca-Cola Company before moving on to a number of leadership roles in media and product marketing that included serving as senior vice president of Time Warner Global Marketing.
Guth earned his undergraduate degree from Harvard College and his MBA from Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration.
In addition, the company has promoted its senior vice president of investments, design and construction, Bennett Westbrook, to executive vice president and chief development officer. In this expanded role, Mr. Westbrook will lead the venue development strategy for the Entertainment segment in addition to his oversight of investments, design and construction for the Hospitality segment.
Reed continued, “This is an exciting time for our Entertainment business, and Bennett will help accelerate our growth further by working closely with our Opry Entertainment Group president, Steve Buchanan, to bring new venue concepts to life in strategic locations across the country and beyond.”
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