NEW YORK AND BEIJING – Derek Chang, an accomplished sports and entertainment executive with more than 20 years of experience in leading and managing global media brands, has been appointed CEO of NBA China, it was announced today by NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. Chang, who begins with the NBA on June 1, will be based in the league’s Beijing office and report to NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum.
As NBA China CEO, Chang will oversee the league’s basketball and business development in China. In his role, he will be supported by NBA China’s senior leadership team to continue the unprecedented popularity and growth of basketball in the region.
Chang was most recently the Head of International Lifestyle Channels at Scripps Networks Interactive, where he directed the international expansion of Scripps’ lifestyle brands. Prior to Scripps, Chang was Executive Vice President of Content Strategy and Development at DIRECTV, where he oversaw all content, including the management of DIRECTV’s sports business and its relationship with the NBA for NBA TV and NBA League Pass – the NBA’s out-of-market live game subscription package. He also previously served as Executive Vice President, Development at Yankees Entertainment & Sports (YES) Network, where he played an instrumental role in the launch of the network and its relationship with the Brooklyn Nets.
“Derek’s experience in media and sports combined with his proven leadership and management abilities makes him an ideal leader of the NBA’s presence in China,” said Silver. “Basketball continues to thrive in China and the NBA looks forward to continuing to work with Yao Ming and the Chinese Basketball Association on growing interest and participation in the game at every level.”
“I am so privileged to join the NBA and its talented team assembled in China at such an exciting time,” said Chang. “The league has done a tremendous job engaging and growing its fanbase in China, and I look forward to working with all our partners in China to lead the league to even greater heights with new initiatives and, most importantly, increasing basketball participation among boys and girls.”
Chang joined Scripps in 2013 as Managing Director, Asia-Pacific before taking on his current role in 2016. During his tenure, he oversaw five international entertainment brands, including Asian Food Channel, Fine Living, Food Network, HGTV and Travel Channel. Under his leadership, HGTV launched outside of North America for the first time. Chang also helped drive the expansion of Food Network in Latin America and its launch as a free-to-air channel in Australia and Italy.
Chang holds an MBA from Stanford University and a bachelor’s degree in history from Yale University. He was named one of Cablefax Magazine’s “Top 100 Executives in Cable” and one of the “50 Most Influential People in Sports Business” by Sports Business Journal. Chang also served on the board of directors of Starz after its public spin-off in 2013.