Adam Kidron

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Adam Kidron is a British-born ex-music producer, serial entrepreneur, and the ex-Chief Executive Officer of Urban Box Office (UBO), a reggaeton and urban Latino record label based in New York City. He is currently a managing partner of 4food, a food company launched in New York in 2009. Kidron is also the President of 4FOOD4LIFE Inc, a non-profit organization. Kidron is currently under the public eye within various tech blogs over the failure of Beyond Oblivion and the Boinc platform.


Kidron's father was Marxist economist Michael Kidron,[1] best known for his book Western Capitalism Since the War. Adam Kidron is the brother of film director Beeban Kidron.

Kidron began his working life as a steward at the Roundhouse in London in 1978.

Business ventures[edit]

Urban Box Office Network (1999-2001)[edit]

The urban Internet portal UBO, the predecessor of the current Urban Box Office, Inc., was co-founded by Kidron, along with the late film director/producer George Jackson and lawyer Frank Cooper, in a parking garage in New York City in 1999. The company aggregated websites such as IndiePlanet, Latinflava and celebrity-based sites featuring people such as the tennis-playing Williams sisters.[citation needed] Latinflava, previously a Spanglish e-magazine, became UBO's own in-house label.[2]

The business model was developed by Kidron after a failed attempt to establish Urban Box Office Networks, Inc., as a basic cable channel. In less than two years, Kidron, Jackson and Cooper raised and spent over $40 million of venture capital on Urban Box Office Networks, Inc. Kidron, who became the CEO of Urban Box Office Networks, Inc., is blamed by many for the company's demise after Jackson died in 2000.[citation needed]

Beyond Oblivion[edit]

Kidron was CEO of the music startup Beyond Oblivion, which bundled music for mobile phone devices. Kidron came under scrutiny over his failed leadership when Beyond Oblivion went bankrupt, costing $33 million. [3] It had spent heavily on marketing, but went bust in December 2011 before it had been able to launch.[1] Kidron explained he had faced difficulties in "co-ordinating the diversity of the ecosystem" and persuading mobile phone and computer manufacturers to collect revenue from purchasers.[4]


Kidron introduced the tech-savvy restaurant, 4Food, to New York in 2010. Food can be ordered using IPads attached to the tables.[5]

Record producer[edit]

Having started out as a "tea boy" for Matrix Studios in London, UK, Adam Kidron went on to be producer many of music releases of the early 1980s.[citation needed]

In 1983, Adam Kidron and his then-girlfriend, Lizzy Mercier Descloux, made a long journey through Africa, starting in Ethiopia and ending in South Africa, where, inspired by all they had experienced, they recorded the album Gazelles, with a band made up of leading Sowetan musicians. The title track was a surprise hit in France, and in 1984, Mercier Descloux won the prestigious Bus d'Acier award for Gazelles.[citation needed]

In 1984, while recording Nina Hagen In Ekstasy (1985)—an album that generated big club hits like Universal Radio and Spirit In The Sky but failed commercially—Kidron had a near-fatal motorbike accident. He went on to produce Mercier Descloux's masterpiece One for the Soul — a collaboration with legendary jazz trumpeter Chet Baker, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1985.[citation needed]

In 1994 Kidron co-executive produced the movie soundtrack for "Jason's Lyric" with George Jackson, Doug McHenry and Sam Sapp.[citation needed] The soundtrack contained three charted singles; "U Will Know", "If You Think You're Lonely Now", (a Bobby Womack cover) and Brian McKnight's cover version of the Van Morrison "Crazy Love".

In 1995 Kidron co-executive produced the soundtrack for Mario Van Peebles, "Panther"[citation needed] - a dramatized account of the story of The Black Panthers, which featured the all-star, all-female single "Freedom".

In 1996 Kidron, along with Sam Sapp, Kenneth Edmonds ["Babyface"], and Antonio Reid ["LA"] executive produced "The Rhythm of The Games", the official soundtrack of the Atlanta Olympic Games.[citation needed]

In 2006, Kidron produced "Nuestro Himno" — the controversial Spanish-language version of "The Star-Spangled Banner".[6] It was dubbed by the media as "The Spanish Star-Spangled Banner". Nuestro Himno was released by Urban Box Office, Inc., of which Adam Kidron was CEO.[citation needed] Kidron presented the song at a concert at the former immigration processing centre, Ellis Island, in May 2006. [6]

TV producer/Catwalk (1986-1997)[edit]

In the mid-1980s Adam Kidron became partner in Crossbow Films Ltd., a groundbreaking UK-based independent producer of syndicated television. At Crossbow, Kidron developed innovative television formats with Henry Winkler and Ben Elton, George Jackson and Doug McHenry, Clarence Avant and Quincy Jones. In 1990 Kidron left Crossbow to form his own production company, Marvellous Pictures, Inc.

In 1991, Kidron and partners Steve Waterman and Jeff Franklin, begun production of Catwalk in Toronto, Canada.[citation needed] Catwalk was a syndicated television series based around the struggles of an urban band trying to hit the big time. The series is best known for launching the career of Neve Campbell (Daisy), discovered by Kidron while she was a performer in the Canadian production of The Phantom of the Opera. Catwalk also featured Lisa Butler (Sierra), Christopher Lee Clements (Atlas), Paul Popowich (Jesse), Kelli Taylor (Mary), and Keram Malicki-Sánchez (Johnny). The show was based on a six-minute mini-movie Adam had produced in London's docklands, which had featured Kate Moss.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b Andrew Orlowski (27 January 2012) "Startup goes titsup: Beyond Oblivion's crash is beyond belief", The
  2. ^ Cobo, Leila (February 26, 2005). "Chayanne Gets Romantic". Billboard: 33. Retrieved 21 July 2014. 
  3. ^ Matt Rosoff (2 March 2012) "The Amazing Story Of How This 'Insane' CEO Blew $33 Million And Never Released A Product", Business Insider.
  4. ^ Harry Wallop (3 January 2012) "Music service Beyond Oblivion collapses into oblivion", The Telegraph (London).
  5. ^ Daniel Maurer (18 August 2010) "4Food Introduces the Viral Restaurant" Grub Street (
  6. ^ a b "Latino US anthem stirs controversy", China Daily, 29 May 2006.