Elliott’s Hollywood gamble
September 22, 2010
Paul Singer is using his sharp elbows to take on
the movie industry, but has he met his match?
In his now infamous second-quarter 2010 investor letter, Paul Singer, founder and chief executive of $17 billon New York hedge fund firm Elliott Management, made a seemingly innocuous announcement about one of his equity investments: “Relativity Media has announced the appointment of Michael Joe as president.” A 15-year executive at the California motion picture company Universal, Joe had most recently been its chief strategy officer.
Headquartered on Beverly Boulevard in Los Angeles, Relativity is a media and entertainment company founded by Ryan Kavanaugh, in which Elliott has a significant investment. Joe’s appointment had film insiders speculating he had been brought in at the behest of Elliott as part of an effort to turn the company around. But those close to Kavanaugh and Elliott say it was Kavanaugh who pushed for Joe, as he was keen to build up the firm’s senior management and get into the film studio business. In...
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