Montgomery, who announced his departure as CEO of ITV America last week, said Wheelhouse will develop content and marketing opportunities for a range of media. The company envisions working with talent in “360 businesses” that involve partnerships across multiple platforms. Wheelhouse will also be home to a new production label, Spoke Studios. Spoke Studios will work with ITV America in developing TV and digital content, per the terms of Montgomery’s exit agreement with ITV.
Montgomery made his name as an unscripted TV entrepreneur known for such hits as History’s “Pawn Stars.” As an indie operator, he rolled up a handful of small production companies into Leftfield Entertainment, which he sold to ITV in 2014 for $360 million. He has spent the past three years as CEO of ITV’s expansive U.S. production operation. He will serve as CEO of Wheelhouse.
“After an amazing run at Leftfield and then ITV, I’m thrilled for the opportunity to build something new and disruptive from the ground up. Incorporating everything I’ve learned and experienced as a producer, an entrepreneur, a CEO and an investor, Wheelhouse will concentrate on creating new and alternative business models specifically aimed at solving our clients’ cost challenges, while leveraging the changing and rocky media landscape we are all navigating,” Montgomery said. “We will seek out and broker key talent partnerships that Wheelhouse also will invest in, helping to nurture and market a range of opportunities that fuel our talents’ goals and key businesses, both inside and outside of entertainment.”
Ed Simpson, a Leftfield and ITV America alum, has joined Wheelhouse as chief strategy officer. Wheelhouse has opened offices in New York and Los Angeles, Montgomery said.
“In Ed Simpson, I have an unparalleled partner in crime, and will rely on him and ITV America’s new CEO, David George, and Chief Creative Officer Adam Sher, who, together will spearhead the production partnership between Spoke and ITV America,” Montgomery said. “I could not be more eager to get started in this second act.”