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32. Michael White
32. Michael White
CEO, DirecTV

This year, the cable companies watched as subscribers left their bills behind -- not so DirectTV. By signing up new subscribers eager to shell out more money for its premium services, shares of the nation's largest satellite TV operator jumped 65% this year. A big part of the draw: DirecTV's highly popular sports offerings such as Major League Baseball's Extra Innings and pro football's Sunday Ticket package, the latter of which was heavily promoted this year with a $100 million ad campaign (and whose pygmy giraffe became a web sensation). Big boost, too, Latin America, where the company has doubled its subscriber base in the last four years.

--P.N.



NEXT: 33. Bill Gross
Last updated November 19 2010: 10:47 AM ET
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