Michael Montgomery General Information
Mr. Michael Montgomery served as an Board Member at Athira Pharma. He is an advisor and investor in early stage companies, an active board member and a Lecturer at the Anderson School of Business at UCLA. He was Co-Founder and President of Montgomery & Co., LLC, a boutique investment bank focused on media and technology, from 1999 through 2013. The Investment Bank specialized in M&A and equity financing for private, and occasionally, public companies. Montgomery & Co. became known for its focus on the intersection of media and technology. Mr. Montgomery personally initiated the transaction and sold Intermix (whose primary asset was MySpace) to News Corporation, Club Penguin to Disney, Daily Candy to Comcast and over 30 other deals during his career there. Montgomery & Co. was known for its hands-on execution and deep understanding of the sectors it banked. Montgomery & Co. merged its operations into Signal Hill in 2013. Prior to Montgomery & Co., he served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Sega GameWorks, L.L.C., a joint venture between Sega, Universal Studios, and DreamWorks. It owned and operated family entertainment centers across the United States. Prior to joining Sega GameWorks, he was a partner and Senior Executive of DreamWorks SKG from 1995 to 1996. He was their lead executive for their $900 million equity raise in 1995. The capital raised was one the largest capital raises ever for a new company without significant operations. He also led their real estate efforts to secure land to build their studio in Glendale and their attempted studio at Playa Vista. He joined DreamWorks after a nine-year career at the Walt Disney Company. As Assistant Treasurer and then Vice President and Treasurer, Mr. Montgomery was responsible for numerous innovative financing arrangements conceived and executed for Disney. This includes the $720 million non-recourse advance for the royalties of Tokyo Disneyland, the first large royalty financing conceived for intellectual property. He was also instrumental in their off-balance sheet film financings, including Silver Screen 2, 3 and 4, and the appropriately named $600 million Touchwood Film Financing. He also proposed and then played a key role in the execution of the initial public offering of EuroDisney in 1989. Upon returning from Paris, he conceived of the first bond with a return indexed to unrelated security or index. The $927 million zero-coupon bond indexed into Euro Disney's stock value pioneered with the SEC and Wall Street the use of derivative-like structures imbedded in bonds. In 1993, he moved to Paris, France, to serve as Directeur General and Chief Financial Officer of Euro Disney, where he played a key role in a difficult financial and operational restructuring. Before joining Disney, he worked at ARCO in its treasury organization, which was well known for its financial sophistication. As the Manager of Corporate Finance, he was the point person for the $620 million sale of the Arco Plaza and played a key role in its $4 billion restructuring in 1985. From 1980 to 1984, he also served as CFO and later President of Arco Solar Europe, a subsidiary of Arco Solar, in Milan, Italy and later, London, UK. At that time, Arco Solar was the largest solar photovoltaic company in the world. He has been a Director of DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. since July 2006, and a Director of Synacor, Inc. since December 2011. He chairs the Audit Committee for both companies. He is also on the board of Open Methods, a Los Angeles based software company. He also served on the Board of Directors of Corus Pharma, and previously, PathoGenesis Corporation, a public pharmaceutical company that developed and sold an aerosolized antibiotic for CF. He received an M.B.A. from the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College (1977), where he holds a BA degree as a Rufus Choate Scholar with magna cum laude honors.