‘I Produce Money’: Why Scott Koondel Left CBS’ C-Suite to Become a Media Entrepreneur

Scott Koondel grew up as an executive at CBS and Paramount Pictures, filling a content sales role that was indispensable to any studio operation in the 1980s, 90s and early 2000s.

Today, four years after leaving CBS, he’s in a new role that is also indispensable for the current era of media. As founder of Sox Entertainment, Koondel has embraced his inner entrepreneur, working as a packager of TV shows and movies. He’s putting together sales and distribution deals for longtime colleagues such as Judith Sheindlin (aka “Judge Judy” and now of Freevee’s “Judy Justice”), he’s consulting on M&A deals and helping companies size up their assets in a fast-changing marketplace.

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After decades as a loyal corporate soldier, Koondel tells Variety‘s Strictly Business podcast that he loves his newfound ability to call all of the shots and work for himself for a change.

Koondel is the first to say he’s not a traditional TV or film producer — but he is definitely in the business of producing content.

“It’s not just like selling a show and getting an EP fee and getting paid as an executive producer, it’s about representing other pieces of the puzzle, whether it’s the IP, or a talent, or a writer, or showrunner producer, and having some sort of arrangement in representing them in this project, producing it and then having backend distribution rights, or a format right and then profit participation. People say to me, ‘Oh, you’re a producer now?’ And I kind of laugh humbly because there are real producers out there, who are, you know, in the control room and on the floor, getting into the nuts and bolts of making TV. I joke around and say the biggest decision I make is what to order for lunch,” Koondel says. “When people ask me, ‘So you’re a producer, what do you produce? My answer usually is ‘I produce money.’ “

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