Paulo showed up in a super large bus to take us over to ESPN Brazil at 9a. The bus even had WiFi, #Win!. Upon arriving, we learned that our main contact hadn’t arrived yet, but we were shown to a conference room to drop our bags and given a short tour of the studios. This location has two main studios, one of which is under construction and the other was in the midst of filming a live show, which we got to watch from the wings! During our tour, we crossed paths with Roberto, who is the Manager of Digital Media. He walked us through the “mobile first” motto at ESPN, where everything is first developed for mobile and then for the computer. His department monitors the web statistics of what people are looking at (a live-feed) and then feed that information, including anything surprising, to the news desk, so that the editorial department can have the option to change the topics being talked about on the sports desk at that time.
After our hallway chat with Roberto, we were brought back to the conference room where we had dropped our stuff and were joined by Fernando. He walked us through the three channels of ESPN in Brazil and then introduced us to Carlos Maloof, who is the Programming and Acquisitions Director. Finally, we were joined by Fernando Casseloni, who is the head of Engineering, Operations, and IT. It was very interesting to hear how all three of their roles melded together and also how they were in the midst (that day) of finalizing their 2016 budget, which was why the first Fernando wasn’t able to join us for long (he had phone conferences to attend to). The thing that I found most interesting at ESPN Brazil was how the office was using Business Intelligence to not only drive their content to the viewer, but also in their driving of advertisements to the viewer. Also, it was comforting to know that they experience some of the same challenges that we do in the states with demographics (i.e. elderly) and mobile.
We left ESPN and headed back to the hotel to pack up our things and head over to the GRU Airport. Our delayed flight departed GRU for Rio de Janeiro (GIG) about an hour late (745p) and we arrived in Rio around 9pm. Our tour provider, Be a Local, met us at the airport and loaded up our luggage and drove us to our hotel in Copacabana. We had another issue with English/Portuguese, but between Jo and Heidi (and the GPS on Jo’s phone) the van driver was finally able to find our hotel on Copacabana beach, the Hotel Astoria Palace. It was late, so while most of the group went out to explore the late-night life, I stayed in the room and ordered room service and worked on my blog and then fell asleep.