Scott Weinstock Named EVP of Development & Production, Melissa Traub Appointed VP of Marketing & Development
New York, NY, April 5, 2022: Ballantyne Strong, Inc. (NYSE American: BTN) (the “Company” or “Ballantyne”) today announced the expansion of its Strong Studios executive team with the appointment of Scott Weinstock as EVP Development & Production, and Melissa Traub as VP Marketing & Development. Both will report to David Ozer, President of Strong Studios.
Strong Studios, which is part of Ballantyne’s Strong Entertainment division, is gearing up for a slate of original projects greenlit for production this year. The first projects include the supernatural horror series Safehaven, based on the graphic novel about a female comic book artist whose drawings come alive to haunt her; and the dramedy series Flagrant, in partnership with actor and comedian, Michael Rapaport (Atypical, White Famous, Public Morals, Justified). Chicken Soup for the Soul’s Screen Media will distribute both series. Additional projects on the Strong Studio development and production slate include Shadows in the Vineyard, set to star Judith Light and Noah Wyle; the drama series, Heartbeat, co-created by legendary DJ couple Kiss and M.O.S.; and the horror series MidNightMares; as well as several features in early stages of development.
As EVP of Development & Production, Weinstock will be responsible for scripted and non-scripted projects for Strong Studios. Traub will lead day-to-day marketing efforts for the studio, and liaise with distribution partners on marketing and social media campaigns for series and feature premieres.
“We have hit the ground running following the launch of Strong Studios with multiple projects heading into production this year, and we are delighted to have Scott and Melisa on board bringing their vast knowledge and expertise to drive our content development and production pipeline,” said Ozer. “I look forwarding to collaborating with them as we work to build our new studio into a preeminent content producer in the global media marketplace.”
The Emmy Award-winning Weinstock has worked with many of the world’s media icons and major league sports organizations throughout his career. Upon joining the NBA as a Senior Producer, Weinstock was instrumental in the creation of NBA Inside Stuff, the longest running YA show in TV history. Rising to VP Executive Creative Director/Supervising Producer, he managed the league’s advertising and marketing campaigns while also helming much of the NBA’s internal and external creative branding efforts. Joining the NHL to create and manage their branding and on air advertising following a season-long lockout, he wrote and directed the well-known “This is My Stanley Cup,” campaign and initiated and executed the highly successful, league-wide cross promotion with Warner Brothers for the motion picture 300. Weinstock produced and directed the comedy special Carie Karavas: Men, Flaws and Menopause for Crackle where he was also the Executive Producer and Head Writer for the 10 episode series Inside the Black Box. Scott has produced programming or created content for MTV, Sega, Disney, American Express, TNT, NFL, PGA, Sony Pictures, Lucas Films, ATT, Southwest Airlines, Ford, Kia, Marriott, Wendy’s and more.
Prior to joining Strong Studios, Traub served as the Director of Development and Marketing at Landmark Studio Group, where she led all marketing activities and managed development and production. Projects included the Crackle Original series Inside the Black Box, hosted by Joe Morton and Tracey Moore; Willy’s Wonderland, starring Nicolas Cage; Safehaven, Flagrant, and several others. From 2016-2019, Melissa managed the digital, social, and exhibitor marketing campaigns for Bleecker Street, a leading independent film studio, and their slate of films, including Steven Soderbergh’s Logan Lucky, starring Channing Tatum, Daniel Craig and Adam Driver; Captain Fantastic, starring Viggo Mortenson; The Art of Self Defense, starring Jesse Eisenberg; as well as Hotel Mumbai, Leave No Trace, Unsane, Arctic, Disobedience and more. Melissa earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Boston University with a concentration in Film, Television and Business.
About Ballantyne Strong, Inc.
Ballantyne Strong, Inc. is a diversified holding company with operations and holdings across a broad range of industries. Ballantyne’s Strong Entertainment segment currently includes one of the largest premium screen suppliers in the United States and also provides technical support services and other related products and services to the cinema exhibition industry, theme parks and other entertainment-related markets. Ballantyne holds a $13 million preferred stake along with Google Ventures in privately held Firefly Systems, Inc., which is rolling out a digital mobile advertising network on rideshare and taxi fleets. Finally, Ballantyne holds a 9% ownership position in GreenFirst Forest Products Inc. (TSX: GFP), a forest-first business focused on sustainable forest management and lumber production, and an 18% ownership position in FG Financial Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: FGF), a reinsurance and investment management holding company focused on opportunistic collateralized and loss capped reinsurance, while allocating capital to SPAC and SPAC sponsor-related businesses.
This press release may contain “forward-looking statements.” All statements, other than statements of historical facts, are forward-looking statements. Ballantyne or Strong Global Entertainment may, in some cases, use words such as “project,” “believe,” “anticipate,” “plan,” “expect,” “estimate,” “intend,” “should,” “would,” “could,” “potentially,” “will” or “may,” or other words that convey uncertainty of future events or outcomes, to identify these forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on management’s current expectations, but actual results may differ materially due to various factors. There can be no guarantees that the initial public offering of Strong Global Entertainment, Inc. will be consummated on the timeline anticipated or at all, or that Ballantyne or Strong Global Entertainment will achieve the anticipated benefits of such a transaction. Ballantyne’s and Strong Global Entertainment’s ability to consummate and achieve the anticipated benefits of the potential initial public offering of Strong Global Entertainment may be materially affected by certain factors outside their control that could affect the advisability, pricing and timing of the potential initial public offering of Strong Global Entertainment, as well as a number of risks and uncertainties regarding the business, results of operation or financial condition of Ballantyne or Strong Global Entertainment, including but not limited to those discussed in the “Risk Factors” section contained in Item 1A in Ballantyne’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020, filed with the SEC on March 10, 2021, as supplemented by Ballantyne’s Amendment No. 1 on Form 10-K/A filed with the SEC on April 28, 2021, and Ballantyne’s subsequent filings with the SEC, in addition to and including the following risks and uncertainties: the negative impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has already had, and may continue to have, on the Company’s business and financial condition; the Company’s ability to maintain and expand its revenue streams to compensate for the lower demand for the Company’s digital cinema products and installation services; potential interruptions of supplier relationships or higher prices charged by suppliers; the Company’s ability to successfully compete and introduce enhancements and new features that achieve market acceptance and that keep pace with technological developments; the Company’s ability to successfully execute its capital allocation strategy or achieve the returns it expects from these investments; the Company’s ability to maintain its brand and reputation and retain or replace its significant customers; challenges associated with the Company’s long sales cycles; the impact of a challenging global economic environment or a downturn in the markets (such as the current economic disruption and market volatility generated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic); economic and political risks of selling products in foreign countries (including tariffs); risks of non-compliance with U.S. and foreign laws and regulations, potential sales tax collections and claims for uncollected amounts; cybersecurity risks and risks of damage and interruptions of information technology systems; the Company’s ability to retain key members of management and successfully integrate new executives; the Company’s ability to complete acquisitions, strategic investments, entry into new lines of business, divestitures, mergers or other transactions on acceptable terms, or at all; the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Company’s portfolio companies; the Company’s ability to utilize or assert its intellectual property rights, the impact of natural disasters and other catastrophic events (such as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic); the adequacy of insurance; the impact of having a controlling shareholder and vulnerability to fluctuation in the Company’s share price. Given the risks and uncertainties, readers should not place undue reliance on any forward-looking statement and should recognize that the statements are predictions of future results which may not occur as anticipated. Many of the risks listed above have been, and may further be, exacerbated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, its impact on the cinema and entertainment industry, and the worsening economic environment. Actual results could differ materially from those anticipated in the forward-looking statements and from historical results, due to the risks and uncertainties described herein, as well as others not now anticipated. New risk factors emerge from time to time and it is not possible for management to predict all such risk factors, nor can it assess the impact of all such factors on the Company’s business or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements. Except where required by law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update, withdraw, or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect actual results or changes in factors or assumptions on which any statement is based.
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