Mike Lang to Join FilmTrack Board
Former Miramax CEO Mike Lang has joined the board of FilmTrack, a digital content management firm that’s attracted a $20 million investment from global private equity company Insight Venture Partners.
FilmTrack will use the new money, which it announced on Monday, to build out its cloud-based product for keeping track of the life-cycle for intellectual property, including where content is licensed and when it will become available on various platforms. As part of its investment, Insight managing directors Peter Sobiloff and Nikitas Koutoupes will join FilmTrack’s board as well.
Lang began consulting for FilmTrack after he left Miramax in 2012, but got to know the digital services company during his time running the Miramax library. Lang, who became CEO right after Disney sold Miramax to a group of investors in 2010, inherited somewhat of an organizational mess. Boxes of scripts and other material sat in a warehouse in New Jersey, and the company had a content management system Lang found “inoperable.”
“It was a cluster of all this information,” Lang told Variety. “My first step was to find somebody who could take all that information, categorize it, and provide tools for my sales team to go out and license it.”
Miramax began using FilmTrack during Lang’s time with the company, and it continues to use the technology today, along with other clients including Lionsgate and the Weinstein Company. Lang left Miramax in March of last year, but not before the company had inked a number of lucrative digital and television licensing agreements with partners including Netflix, Hulu and Facebook.
The library’s exploitation led to a valuation of more than $800 million in 2011, up from its purchase price of $663 million just a year earlier.
“I’m so proud of what we were able to accomplish at Miramax,” Lang said. “This product was really a core reason for our success.”
Collapsing windows and new digital platforms have made licensing deals more complicated, and keeping track of those deals even more so. And Lang argues that a more complicated patchwork of rights deals requires sophisticated organizational tools.
“The world used to be dramatically different, you’d do three or four deals and then you’d call it a day,” Lang said. “Now they’re slicing and dicing these deals by the month.”