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ELI Fellow Eduardo Bandera on the Value of Attending ACC's Executive Leadership Institute (ELI)

E duardo Bandera is the deputy general counsel for the Content Division at Grupo Televisa, S.A.B., which is the largest media company in the Spanish-speaking world and a major participant in the international entertainment business. Bandera has been working for Televisa in the legal department for the past 17 years; he oversees all transactions related to the content area of the company. He manages a team of five legal directors, who are aligned with such business units as movies and sports; and a total legal department of about 50 people, most based in Mexico City.

Eduardo BanderaBandera attended the ACC Executive Leadership Institute in London in October, 2015. He was nominated for attendance by Televisa’s general counsel, Joaquín Balcarcel, with whom he has worked nearly all his professional life. Before joining Grupo Televisa, Bandera and Balcarcel worked at the law firm of Martínez, Algaba, de Haro, Curiel y Galván Duque, and made the move in-house together. Bandera had already discovered that he did not care for litigation, and had begun to concentrate on commercial work. The job at Televisa suits him well:

“It gives me an opportunity to see many areas of the company in an industry I love, which is entertainment; it is very enriching,” he says. Bandera particularly enjoys his frequent involvement in operations and negotiations, as well as getting to know the company’s other division heads on a personal level.

He was excited about the opportunity to attend ELI. “I am always very open to programs that will enrich my career,” he says. In fact, ELI offered “great leadership development opportunities mixed with legal issues” that “exceeded expectations.”

“I enjoyed learning from other participants around the world. It’s nice to know people working in the same position at so many different companies; many of our experiences were alike,” Bandera says. He especially derived great value from working in small groups and participating in role plays, saying that it was good practice in coming to consensus within a group of people who did not previously know one another. He also cites the risk management session as valuable, and says that he has put the advice about creating contingency plans into practice since returning home.

Back at Televisa, Bandera spends much of his time ensuring appropriate third-party use of Televisa content and the inverse: appropriate Televisa use of others’ content. Making decisions quickly is key in the world of free television, where producers can be somewhat creative in their use of others’ material, and where a program is being readied for broadcast the next day.

“There is always a lot of work,” Bandera says. “The television production timetable is always running.”

The company uses outside counsel extensively, especially in the United States. The panel does not change much; firms are selected based on a level of service and trust that has been developed over time, Bandera says. Although no discrete value initiative currently exists, “We have negotiated alternative and beneficial fee arrangements on the basis of those long-term working relationships,” he says.

Bandera describes himself as an accessible executive who values getting to know the members of the legal department on a personal level. One of his key initiatives for the coming year is building skill and capacity within the department’s leaders by providing coaching and tuition reimbursement for master’s degree programs. “We take professional development for our people very seriously and with a lot of commitment,” he says.

Bandera obtained his Law degree from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in 1999. He has three children and enjoys tennis, golf, and watching movies in his free time.

About the Author

Jennifer J. Salopek is freelance writer based in McLean, Virginia. [email protected] 

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