Cinedigm has appointed four new independent directors – Blair Westlake, Andy Schuon, Zvi Rhine, and Patrick O’Brien – to its board of directors, effective immediately. With the appointments announced today, the two current vacancies on the Board are filled and the size of the Board will go from 8 to 12 directors.
The company also named Ron Chez to the role of strategic advisor to the company. In this capacity, Chez will advise Cinedigm on financings and capital structure, strategic transactions and opportunities, including acquisitions and dispositions, and other matters. Chez brings deep business and financial expertise to the company, including six years as the co-chairman of Merriman Holdings, the parent company of Merriman Capital.
“When the company announced in May a plan to strengthen our board to better support our content distribution business and over-the-top digital network business, we undertook a best practices process that resulted in many qualified candidates to choose from,” said Chris McGurk, chairman and chief executive officer. “Since then, our nominating committee has been working hard to interview the candidates. Today, we are pleased to announce that our search led us to Blair, Andy, Zvi, and Patrick. Collectively, they bring important entertainment experience, financial expertise and significant industry relationships to our Board, and we are certain they will help guide Cinedigm as we continue to grow the company and build shareholder value.”
Westlake is currently a principal at MediaSquareup. Prior to that, he was corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Media & Entertainment Group.
Schuon is the chief executive officer of Master Channel, a media and technology company. He is co-founder with “Sean” Diddy Combs of Revolt Media and TV, a multi-platform cable television network, and is chairman of music service provider Elevated Networks.
Rhine is a principal at Sabra Capital Partners with over a decade of financial and investing experience.
O’Brien is a seasoned executive and business advisor, with 40 years of multi-unit international management experience with an emphasis in financial analysis and business development. Since 2010, O’Brien has served as a member of the board of directors of Merriman Holdings, Inc.
The announced appointments positively resolve ongoing discussions the company has had with Chez and Rhine, who have entered into a Settlement Agreement providing for a standstill period.
“Additionally, we are pleased to have Ron onboard as a strategic advisor. We have appreciated his thoughts and ideas thus far and look forward to working with him in a more formal capacity,” continued McGurk.
Chez serves as president and sole owner of Ronald L. Chez, Inc., a corporation that deals with financial management consulting, public and private investments, turnaround strategies, structuring of new ventures, and mergers and acquisitions.
“Cinedigm strongly believes in good corporate governance, maintaining an open dialogue with all key stakeholders and ensuring that our investors have an appropriate say in the management and strategic direction of the company,” said Peter Brown, lead independent director. “To that end, we are very pleased that Ron will be taking on a formal role with the company and Zvi will be joining the board. We believe the Company will benefit greatly from their expertise and focus on value creation.”