About Machete Group

Toyota Center (Houston, Texas)


Machete Group provides strategic and advisory operational services to clients in sports, entertainment, retail, and real estate development on projects around the world. Machete Group clients and projects include:

  • Golden State Warriors
  • Mikhail Prokhorov/Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center
  • The National Basketball Association
  • MasterCard Center Beijing
  • Mercedes-Benz Arena Shanghai
  • Robert Pera/Memphis Grizzlies
  • Josh Harris/Philadelphia 76ers
  • Spire Capital/Professional Bull Riders
  • Red Star F.C.


David Carlock is the founder and principal of Machete Group. Carlock has a lengthy track record of successful execution and has extensive knowledge of complex customer-facing operations, product development, branding, and strategic relationships.

Before founding Machete Group, Carlock served as Senior Vice President of Business Development for the Houston Rockets. During his tenure, franchise value increased by approximately 250%. His responsibilities included:

  • Toyota Center Development and Operation: Supervised the design and construction of Toyota Center, Houston’s $225 mil multi-purpose arena, and delivered the project on budget and on time in September 2003. Carlock also oversaw all areas of building opening and ongoing facility operations for the first three years of operation.
  • Houston Regional Sports Network: Played a lead role in the formation of the Houston Regional Sports Network, a $1 bil cable network jointly owned by the Rockets and the Houston Astros.
  • Ticketing Platform: Led a multi-disciplinary project team -- consisting of third-party software developers and Rockets’ ticket sales, box office, and event booking departments -- to develop and launch the Vertical Alliance ticketing platform. Vertical Alliance merged with Flash Seats in early 2008 to create Veritix, a market leader in the ticketing industry.
  • Sponsorship: Worked closely with the Rockets’ sales team to identify, negotiate, and execute against a series of environmental sponsor platforms including The Toyota Tundra Zone, The Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Club, and the Memorial Hermann Skycourt. Total associated revenue exceeds $100 mil.

Prior to joining the Rockets, Carlock was a member of Hard Rock Café International’s senior management team where he focused on the company’s global restaurant, gaming, digital media, and hospitality initiatives.

Carlock began his career in The Walt Disney Company’s Corporate Strategic Planning Department. He worked extensively on resort, theme park, and location-based entertainment projects including Disneyland Resort Expansion, Walt Disney World Resort Expansion, Disney Vacation Club, ESPNZone, and the corporate five-year strategic plan.

Carlock sits on the board of Management Leadership for Tomorrow, a New York-based nonprofit organization committed to helping high potential African-American, Hispanic, and Native-American students and young professionals successfully pursue careers in business. He is a graduate of Harvard College and a native of Boston, Massachusetts.