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Qualia Capital Founder Ken Schapiro Is MGM's New COO

The new chief operating officer begins work at the studio Monday

Hollywood veteran Ken Schapiro MGM's new COO, the company announced Monday.

Schapiro is the co-founder and managing principal of Qualia Capital LLC, a private investment management firm that focuses on the entertainment industry.

At Qualia, Schapiro and his partner Amir Malin most recenlty have been buying up a large catalogue of older films and TV shows and controlling their licensing. Prior to that, they bought up money-losing Artisan Films in 1998, where Schapiro was president and COO, selling it for $160 million five years later.

Before starting Qualia, Schapiro was executive vice president at Morgan Creek Productions, where he was involved in the development, production, financing and distribution of more than 30 movies.

Business Week has reported that Qualia has a reputation as a sharp investor with significant knowledge of the entertainment industry.

"Ken’s background, experience and proven track record make him an undeniable asset to MGM. We believe his skills and energy will be integral in helping us build the new MGM," MGM co-chairman and CEOs Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum said in a written statement.

In the statement, Schapiro said that, “While it is difficult to leave the business I co-founded with my partner Amir Malin, returning to an operating role to work with Gary and Roger at the new MGM from this early stage is too exciting a challenge to pass up,” said Schapiro.