Mark Montgomery (entrepreneur)

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Mark Montgomery, 2011

Mark Anthony Montgomery (born June 16, 1967) is an American entrepreneur best known for his early use of B2C (business to consumer) marketing and e-commerce channels in the entertainment industry.

Background[edit]

Mark Montgomery was born and raised in Green Bay, Wisconsin, the oldest of two children born to Mary Jo Montgomery, a visual artist and Richard Montgomery, an entrepreneur. He graduated from Premontre High School in 1985 and went on to attend to the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, where he formed a band, "Swallow This," before graduating in 1990.

Early career[edit]

After college, Montgomery worked for a tour management company, Nali Productions, built a recording studio in his basement, and formed a classic rock band called “Fannie and the Farmers”, consisting of Montgomery on lead guitar and vocals; Joe Ebel on guitar, vocals and fiddle; Bill Fanning, who went on to play trumpet with artists such as Bela Fleck, Teresa Fanning on bass and vocals; and Chris Milfred (a former “Swallow This” member) on drums and percussion.

In the spring of 1991, Montgomery and fellow band member Chris Milfred moved to Nashville to work in the music industry. Montgomery’s first job in Nashville was as a salesman and as a mastering engineer for Sound Impressions. After his first year in Nashville, Montgomery had launched his own manufacturing business, Empire Manufacturing.[1]

After growing Empire Manufacturing, Montgomery partnered with Chris Milfred in a business known as Chelsea Studios. In early 1994, Montgomery launched a website for Chelsea Studios, a services and booking agency.[1]

Echomusic[edit]

In 1999, Montgomery and Neil Einstman, one of his partners in ChelseaMusic, formed echomusic, LLC, a digital marketing and distribution company which aimed to facilitate direct communication between artists and fans. Clients included Kelly Clarkson, Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Casting Crowns, the Academy of Country Music, and the Gospel Music Channel.[2]

In 2007, echo attracted the attention of IAC/Ticketmaster, which purchased a majority interest in echo.[2][3] Montgomery left echo in 2009 to pursue other ventures.[4]

FLO {thinkery}[edit]

In July 2011 Montgomery founded FLO thinkery out of Nashville, TN. Designed as think tank and investment firm, FLO has developed strategy and consulted for companies such as Nissan and Under Armour.[5] FLO thinkery collaborated with country music superstar Kenny Chesney to develop Fishbowl Spirits, LLC, with Montgomery leading as CEO. In 2013 Fishbowl Spirits launched premium spirits line, Blue Chair Bay Rum.[6] Also in 2013, FLO thinkery launched a YouTube multichannel network, Made In Network, which has original music content centered around the Nashville creative community.[7]

In November 2013, The Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce awarded FLO thinkery with The Next Award for "Best Startup, Digital Media and Entertainment".[8]

FLO thinkery plans to move its headquarters in 2015 to a building in the "SoBro" area of Nashville. Montgomery formed strategic partnership with local businessmen to purchase the building on Ewing Avenue.[9][10]

Entrepreneurship[edit]

In 2007 Mongtomery was awarded the Nashville Business Journal's Entrepreneur of the Year.[11]

In the fall of 2013, Montgomery partnered up with Middle Tennessee State University's Music Business Department to teach a class revolving around the "New Music Business" and the marriage of music and technology.[12] Montgomery arranged for the students to receive mentorship through The Nashville Entrepreneurship Center, where Montgomery is a current member on the Board of Directors.[13]

Montgomery brought Google for Creators and Google for Entrepreneur events to Nashville in 2013.[14]

References[edit]

Additional sources[edit]

External links[edit]