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Kevin Wall (born March 15, 1952), is an American media entrepreneur, global event producer, investor and activist. He is the CEO and founder of the investment fund PTK Capital, the co-founder and co-chairman of Dreamscape Immersive, a location-based virtual reality start up, and the founder and CEO of Control Room, a Los Angeles-based production company. The first person to receive an Emmy Award for interactive content, Wall is noted for his role in the development and adoption of media technologies including online and multi-platform distribution and media practices such as international rights acquisition and licensing.[1][2]

Kevin Wall
Kevin Wall.jpg
Kevin Wall at Orlando Stadium in Soweto, Johannesburg, South Africa on 2 June 2010
ResidenceLos Angeles, California
NationalityAmerican
OccupationProducer, Entrepreneur, Activist, Investor
Years active1984 - present
OrganizationPTK Capital (CEO and founder)
Dreamscape Immersive (co-chairman and co-founder)
Control Room (CEO and founder)
Known forLive Earth, Live 8, Chime for Change
Board member ofBretelon, Inc.
Climate Reality Project
Craton Equity Partners
GCE High Level Panel
Global Water Challenge
Hammer Museum
XPRIZE Innovation Board
Spouse(s)Susan Smalley Wall, Ph.D.
ChildrenPatrick
Timothy
Kelly
AwardsBillboard Humanitarian of the Year
EMA Outstanding Achievement Award
Emmy Award, Interactive Content
Ellis Island Medal of Honor
MIDEM Green Award
Websitecontrolroom.com
ptkcapital.com

Wall's ventures often integrate environmental and social activism. With Radio Vision International, his first media company, he distributed and produced live benefit concerts including Human Rights Now!, USA for Africa, Live Aid, and the anti-apartheid Nelson Mandela 70th Birthday Tribute. As the founder and CEO of Control Room, he executive produced Live 8, which drew a worldwide audience of a billion people, and created and executive produced Live Earth, viewed globally by an estimated two billion people. Wall co-founded Sustainable Holdings, a company which weights its holdings based on a company’s sustainability score, and is a general partner at Craton Equity Partners, a $242 million green-tech private equity fund. PTK Capital focuses on early investments in companies that offer social, environmental and educational benefits and address issues of gender equality.[3]

Early lifeEdit

Wall grew up in Fort Wayne, Indiana, where his family of fourteen worked and lived in a roller-skating rink called the Roller Dome. He programmed music as the Roller Dome disc jockey, and later said that the experience gave him insight into the power of music to move people.

CareerEdit

Stage One, Radio Vision International, BoxTop, iXLEdit

Wall left home at 18, and moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan, where he promoted concerts at the University of Michigan and other Midwest colleges. After he was asked to provide a portable stage for a George Harrison show, Wall founded a portable staging company, Stage One, Inc. Within several years, the company had become the largest of its kind, providing lighting, staging, and outdoor production for stadium and arena tours for The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin and The Who, among other artists.

In 1984, Wall founded Radio Vision International, a company which "pioneered the business of international music video licensing." Convinced of the opportunity that increasing broadcast options would provide, he developed the idea for Radio Vision while attending an annual television conference in Cannes. His assessment was accurate, and Radio Vision was quickly profitable, distributing 60 music television programs internationally and building a library of more than 125 music and specialty programs. The company's financial success allowed Wall to work with non-profits, providing Radio Vision's services on a break-even basis for benefit concerts such as Live Aid, USA for Africa, the Human Rights Now! Tour, the 70th birthday tribute to South African activist Nelson Mandela and the annual Prince's Trust Rock Gala, sponsored by Britain's Prince Charles, to raise money for underprivileged children.[4]

In 1994 Wall established BoxTop, a web design company, which was merged with iXL, an Atlanta-based media and internet consulting company in 1997. As the vice chairman of iXL, Wall led the strategic acquisition and organization of 42 Internet design and consulting companies to build a venture with 3,000 employees, 38 offices and annual revenues of over $400 million.[5] iXL went public in 1999 and reached a market capitalization of $2 billion within one year.[6]

Live 8, Live Earth, Control Room, Dreamscape ImmersiveEdit

In 2005, Wall created Network LIVE, a joint venture with AEG, AOL, and XM Satellite Radio. Wall executive produced its inaugural production, Live 8, and designed its global media architecture. A series of benefit concerts to bring attention to poverty in Africa, Live 8 involved more than 250 musicians, including Madonna, U2, Destiny's Child, Jay-Z, and Pink Floyd, who performed within 24 hours of one another at concerts on 7 continents.[7] Utilizing both legacy and new media, the concert drew an estimated audience of two billion people,[8] with a live worldwide multi-feed webcast setting online viewership records. As the executive producer of Live 8, Wall won the first Emmy for content delivered via the internet;[9] it was later described as a "tipping point" and the "defining moment" in online content distribution.[10]. In 2006, Wall acquired full control of Network LIVE and renamed it Control Room.[11]

Inspired by US Vice President Al Gore and his Oscar-winning documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, Wall co-created Live Earth, a global concert event designed to raise environmental awareness and combat climate change. On July 7, 2007, 150 musical acts, including The Police, Alicia Keys, Metallica, and Kanye West performed at eleven locations around the world in concerts that were broadcast globally through television, satellite and terrestrial radio, handheld devices, and the internet.[12] The event set a live-streaming record as 237,000 people watched video coverage from MSN simultaneously.[13] Live Earth reached an audience of nearly two billion people and set live streaming records, with 15 million streams initiated during the live event, and 100 million the following week.[14]

Initially envisioned as a one-off event, Live Earth became an advocacy organization which works with thw corporate, non-governmental, entertainment and political influencers and organizations around the world.[15][16][17]

As of 2015, Control Room had created, developed, distributed and/or produced more than 150 events, including the Green Inaugural Ball,[18] the FIFA World Cup Kick off Celebration in 2010, and Gucci’s Chime for Change concert.[19] The company has won 11 Telly Awards for excellence in categories including Education, Information, News, Social Issues, and Videography.[20]

In 2016, Wall invested in and co-founded Dreamscape Immersive, an entertainment and technology company, with Walter Parkes. Dreamscape Immersive creates story-based full-roam virtual reality experiences which allow as many as six people at once to explore a virtual 3D environment, seeing fully rendered avatars of one another. Wall serves as co-chairman of the company, which received nearly $40 million in investments from film studios AMC, IMAX, Steven Spielberg, and others.

Venture capital, equity, and early stage investmentsEdit

Wall was a general partner of Craton Equity Partners, a $242 million green-tech private equity fund,[21] and was a founder of Sustainable Holdings, a company which weights its holdings based on a company’s sustainability score.[22] He also co-founded Shelter Capitol Partners, a $175 million venture capital fund focused on companies in the semi-conductor, software, and convergence sectors.[23]

Wall brought his experience as an early stage investor in companies including Facebook, KeVita and Akamai to PTK Capital which he founded in 2015. PTK Capital is an investment fund that invests in transformative companies in the Entertainment, Food and Wellness areas. PTK Capital supports "people and ideas with the potential to significantly benefit the human condition."

Personal lifeEdit

Wall is married to Susan Smalley, a scientist, author, activist, and professor emeritus at UCLA in the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences. Smalley serves on the board of Equality Now, a human rights organization dedicated to women and girls.[24] They have three children.[25]

Recognition and awards (partial list)Edit

Boards and affiliations (partial list)Edit

Dreamscape Immersive Co-chairman and Co-founder
Hammer Museum Board of directors

Selected creditsEdit

Year Title Credit
2013 Chime for Change (concert) Executive producer
24 Hours of Reality: The Cost of Carbon Executive producer
The Sound of Change Live Executive producer
2011 Decade of Difference: A Concert Celebrating 10 Years
of the William J. Clinton Foundation
Executive producer
2010 FIFA World Cup Kick-Off Celebration Concert Executive producer
Live Earth Run for Water Executive producer
2008 Madonna: Live from Roseland Ballroom Executive producer
2007 Jay-Z: Live from Hammerstein Ballroom Executive producer
Live Earth: The Concerts for a Climate Crisis Executive producer
Michael Bublé: Live from Webster Hall Executive producer
2006 Nokia New Year's Eve Executive producer
2005 Live 8 Executive producer
1994 Apollo Theater Hall of Fame Executive producer
1993 Apollo Theatre Hall of Fame Executive producer
Bob Dylan: The 30th Anniversary Concert Celebration Executive producer
1992 Michael Jackson: Live in Bucharest: The Dangerous Tour Executive producer
Elton John: Live in Barcelona Executive producer

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Barnes, Brooks, "Coming Soon to AMC Theaters: Virtual Reality Experiences", The New York Times
  2. ^ Leonard, Devin, "Here comes the sun", Fortune
  3. ^ O'Carrol, Lisa, "Kiosked raises nearly $7m in funding", The Guardian
  4. ^ Brooks, Nancy Rivera, “Rights 'n' Roll : Two brothers pioneered the business of international music video licensing.", The Los Angeles Times
  5. ^ Snyder, Beth (March 9, 1998). "Interactive: West Coast Spotlight: Boxtop rides Interactive Waves in LA: New media shop eyes future in technology and acquisitions". AdAge. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  6. ^ Weiss, Michael (March 20, 2000). "Investments get bigger as valuations rise". Atlanta Business Journal. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  7. ^ Kaufman, Gil (July 2, 2005). "Jay-Z, U2, Madonna, Pink Floyd Deliver Live 8 Highlights". mtv.com. MTV. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  8. ^ "Millions gather for Live 8", cnn.com
  9. ^ “Live 8 on AOL” wins first broadband Emmy honoring programs for internet, cellphones, PDAs |The Emmy Awards- The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences", emmyonline.com
  10. ^ Farzad, Roben, " “Concert Video Is a Hit, Validating a Bet by AOL".", The New York Times
  11. ^ News staff "Kevin Wall acquires company, renaming it Control Room", billboard.com. Billboard
  12. ^ Coyle, Jake (July 2, 2007). "Live Earth Aims to Cause Lasting Change". Washington Post. AP. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  13. ^ Klassenn, Abby. "Entertainment Marketers 2008: Kevin Wall". adage.com. AdAge. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  14. ^ Smith, David (June 30, 2007). "Gore show is set to be biggest on earth". The Guardian. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  15. ^ CBS News (September 18, 2008). "Live Earth Concert Heads To India". cbsnews.com. CBS News. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
  16. ^ Bruno, By Bill Werde and Antony “Live 8 demonstrates power of digital media", “TODAY.com”
  17. ^ Shay Sayre, Cynthia King [https://books.google.com/books?id=teCPAgAAQBAJ&printsec=frontcover#v=twopage&q=live%20earth&f=false “Entertainment and Society: Influences, Impacts, and Innovations. Routledge. p. 398."
  18. ^ "City native is producer of Green Inaugural Ball"., News Sentinel
  19. ^ Alexander, Ella "Beyoncé And Gucci To Host Global Concert In London", billboard.com. Billboard
  20. ^ "35th Annual Telly Award Winners", tellyawards.com. Telly Awards
  21. ^ Leondis, Alexis "TCW Buys Craton Equity to Expand Alternatives Unit". , bloomberg.com. Bloomberg
  22. ^ Kanani, Rahim "Tech exec takes Shelter", Variety.
  23. ^ Graser, Marc "Recyclebank: A Case Study in Motivating Positive Behavioral Change" , forbes.com. Forbes.
  24. ^ "Collaborative Centers for Integrative Medicine: Susan Smalley". ucla.edu. UCLA. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  25. ^ "Susan Smalley Profile". huffingtonpost.com. Huffington Post. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  26. ^ Klaassen, Abbey. "Entertainment Marketers 2008: Kevin Wall". adage.com. Advertising Age. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  27. ^ "A TRIBUTE TO THE 2009 ELLIS ISLAND MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS". gpo.gov. Congressional Record Volume 155, Number 86. June 10, 2009. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  28. ^ EMA AWARDS RECIPIENTS & HONOREES [1], "Environmental Media Association"
  29. ^ "GQ Magazine Hosts The Gentlemen's Ball - Inside". zimbio.com. Zimbio. Retrieved 6 August 2014.
  30. ^ "Live Earth wins new award for 'green' music events". CBC News. January 3, 2008. Retrieved 6 August 2014.

External linksEdit