With more than 20 years of corporate experience in the media and entertainment sector, Mr. Ells has served as CFO, COO and CEO in a range of companies involved in filmed entertainment, TV production, recorded music, music publishing, theatre production and theatre management. On his most recent case Mr. Ells has served as Interim COO of the Global English division of Pearson Plc, assisting the business in the formation of a new management organisation, generating growth and the transition to digital products and platforms.
Mr. Ells also served as the EVP and CFO of PolyGram Filmed Entertainment (PFE), a leading film and TV production and distribution company, with annual sales in excess of $1 billion and operations in 14 countries worldwide. At PFE, he was instrumental in raising more than $1 billion in film financing through bank financing, film lease and securitisation schemes. He represented PFE as a founding Board Director of the Sundance Channel, a joint venture U.S. cable TV channel for independent film.
Before joining A&M, Mr. Ells served as COO, CFO and Regional Director of EMI Music, a major record company operating in nearly 50 countries worldwide with sales of more than $3 billion. At EMI, Mr. Ells oversaw two major restructurings, reduced headcount by more than 40 per cent and put in place a new profit-and-loss structure and reporting basis to enhance management visibility and ownership of results. Earlier, he served as CFO of Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber's Really Useful Group, one of the world’s leading theatre owning and theatre production companies involved in film and video production, magazine publishing, recorded music and music publishing, merchandising, toys and games. There, he was instrumental in the successful acquisition of The Stoll Moss Theatre Group in a joint venture deal with a U.K. private equity group and successfully managed the disposal of a loss making non-core business to a strategic buyer.
An experienced mergers and acquisitions advisor, Mr. Ells has been previously involved in the acquisition or sale of companies such as Motown Records, TVT Records, the Epic film library, ITC Entertainment, the Sundance Channel and the Stoll Moss Theatres Group.
Mr. Ells earned a diploma in accounting before starting his career at Ernst & Young. He is a Chartered Accountant and a U.K. national.
NOTE: Alvarez & Marsal employs CPAs but is not a licensed CPA firm.