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MGM’s Ken Schapiro Departing Chief Strategic Officer Post

Ken Schapiro, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s chief strategic officer, will be departing the company at the end of this month.

Chairman and CEO Gary Barber made the announcement Thursday.

“I am fully supportive of Ken’s decision,” Barber said. “He has done an outstanding job at MGM, and I will miss his counsel and daily friendship. Having known Ken for 25 years and worked with him for 12 years, I know he will be successful in whatever endeavor he chooses and we wish him nothing but the best.”

Barber and Roger Birnbaum were appointed co-chairmen and CEOs of MGM in December 2010 as the company emerged from a pre-packaged bankruptcy. They brought in Schapiro six months later after he had served as a founder and managing principal of Qualia Capital.

Since that time, they have secured a distribution and co-financing partnership with Sony Pictures Entertainment for the 23rd James Bond pic “Skyfall,” the yet-to-be-titled 24th Bond film, “21 Jump Street” and “22 Jump Street.”

Warner Bros. is partnered with MGM on the three “Hobbit” films and partnered with Paramount on “G.I. Joe: Retaliation” and “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters.”

In March privately held MGM Holdings reported a 97% jump in earnings in 2013 and an 11% gain in revenues, citing “Skyfall,” its two “Hobbit” films and its TV series “Vikings” and “Teen Wolf.”

“Being part of the restructuring of MGM has been an amazing challenge and an opportunity of a lifetime,” Schapiro said. “With MGM in its best financial position ever, I have decided to spend more time with my family and will then look for my next challenge. I am very grateful for the opportunity that I have had at MGM, and I will always remain close to Gary and the entire MGM management team.”

Barber said in a statement, “We are executing well across all business units and we continue to build our content pipeline, expand our distribution network and exploit our valuable library. MGM is in the strongest position in our history, and our deep management team is poised to deliver another year of record results in 2014.”


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