Union further establishes Empire as one of the world’s leading producers of top tier events

New York, July 17, 2019 -- J. B. Miller, president and CEO of Empire Entertainment, Inc., and Mark Poncher, president of PeakXV Global Events, today announced the union of their two global event production agencies. After many years of collaboration, Empire and PeakXV agreed to merge in order to expand their capabilities and global footprint to best serve the mission-driven needs of existing and future clients. The combined entity will now be known simply as Empire.

Miller and Poncher have more than 60 years of live and broadcast event production experience combined, bringing clients’ brands and stories to life with lasting impact. The companies they’ve built have each become industry leaders in the design, planning and execution of global media and experiential events worldwide.

"All of us at Empire are thrilled to welcome Mark Poncher and his team to our family,” says Miller. “From our first collaboration in 2007 on the Clinton Global Initiative Global Citizen Awards at Carnegie Hall, it was clear that Mark and his team were consummate professionals and extraordinary producers who share Empire’s commitment to excellence and client service. We know that combining our two stellar teams into one organization will provide all our clients in the corporate, private, government and not-for-profit arenas with unparalleled capabilities to create and produce events that matter."

Poncher, now COO of the company, added, "I'm really excited, as is everyone on the PeakXV production staff, to join forces with the great team that Empire has built. Together we look forward to strengthening capabilities across the organization and expanding our West Coast team to support current and future clients."

Empire recently marked its 25 th anniversary with another consecutive year of record growth. The New York, Tokyo, Los Angeles and Hong Kong-based firm has executed projects in over 100 countries including high-profile events like the TIME 100 Gala, Tribeca Film Festival, the Black Ball and the Grand Opening of Palm Island Dubai. The union with PeakXV will contribute greatly to increasing momentum and growth. And with Poncher taking on the role of COO, Miller, long recognized as one of the event industry’s top executive producers and creative visionaries, will dedicate substantially more time to client management and creative direction.

"Our plan is to leverage our respective strengths and prioritize three areas with great growth potential for us," says Miller. The Empire plan calls for:

  • Increasing focus on noteworthy thought leadership programs, summits, conferences, and exhibitions of international stature and gravitas.
    Empire’s experience on projects like Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Goalkeepers, Eurasia Group’s GZero Summit, and Smart Cities NYC, is now supplemented by the team behind the Clinton Global Initiative, C40 Johannesburg, Solve at MIT, and others.
  • Expanding Empire’s West Coast presence with full, local production capacity from Seattle, Portland & the Bay Area to Los Angeles & Las Vegas.
    Empire has long served West Coast clients in the technology, media, entertainment, automotive, digital and fashion/lifestyle industries. This move immediately transforms Empire’s existing West Coast team into a large-scale operation capable of full-service client management, creative development and execution for all types of projects.
  • Expanding capabilities to produce large scale sporting & civic events, particularly surrounding the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
    Poncher and his team bring unrivaled experience in large scale sporting events to supplement Empire’s work with sports brands that include FOX Sports, Sports Illustrated, Nike and Adidas. Poncher’s deep experience in the sports space includes the Pan Am Games Opening & Closing Ceremonies in Rio and Guadalajara, the Pyeonchang handover during the Closing Ceremony of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, The Paralympic Games, the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the European Games in Baku, Azerbaijan, and serving as Executive Producer for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Special Olympics at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

This expansion also serves as an important step in Empire’s long-term global growth plan, which includes creating a formal presence in Europe, Middle East and Africa where both Empire and PeakXV have extensive capabilities and past experience.

J. B. Miller founded Empire Entertainment in 1993 and has grown it into a dynamic, full-service, New York City and Tokyo-based experiential and entertainment production agency that designs and produces projects for corporate, government, association, not-for-profit, and private clients.

Led by Miller, long recognized as one of the industry’s leading executive producers and creative visionaries, Empire has executed projects in over 100 countries. These events have included, broadcasts, parties, conferences, launches, festivals and awards programs such as the White House U.N. General Assembly Head of State Reception, the TIME 100 Gala, The Tribeca Film Festival, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue launch, The Webby Awards, The Clinton Global Initiative’s Global Citizen Awards, The Gotham Awards, the Film Society of Lincoln Center Chaplin Award Gala, the Fitch Ratings Why? Forum, the Robin Hood Investor Conference, the Keep a Child Alive Black Ball, Microsoft Connect Developer Conference, Internet Week and the Grand Opening of Atlantis, Palm Island in Dubai.

Empire projects have also included participation by artists and leaders such as Adele, Jay-Z, Bono, Beyoncé, Justin Timberlake, Bruce Springsteen, Alicia Keys, Prince, Bruno Mars, Sting, David Bowie, Andrea Bocelli, Kanye West, Stevie Wonder, Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, Rihanna, Jerry Seinfeld, Billy Crystal, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, President Barack Obama, President Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama, Blue Man Group, and David Copperfield among others.

PeakXV was formed at the beginning of 2017, as a partnership between Mark Poncher and Chris Wayne (who passed away in January 2019). Their clients include the Clinton Global Initiative, the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, Third Way, Solve at MIT, the Soufan Foundation, the General Entertainment Authority of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, HuffPost, and the Above the Noise RecoveryFest Concerts.

Prior to PeakXV, Mr. Poncher spent more than 30 years producing events, creating experiences and managing environments for audiences large and small. He has served as the Executive Producer of the Clinton Global Initiative conferences worldwide since 2006, C40 Annual Meeting in Johannesburg, the Bloomberg Tobacco Awards in Abu Dhabi, and the U.S. - Africa Business Forum.

Mark was also the Business Producer for the ceremonies for 2007 Rio and 2011 Guadalajara Pan and Parapan American Games, Rio Réveillon (New Year’s Eve), and the Cinco De Mayo 150th Anniversary broadcast special. He was Head of Production for the Baku 2015 European Games Ceremonies and the Executive Producer of the 2014 and 2015 Rose Parade Opening and Closing Spectaculars. He produced the Handover Ceremonies for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Games Opening and Closing Ceremonies as well as the Executive Producer for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the 2015 Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.

For more information, contact:

J. B. Miller
President & CEO

Mark Poncher

Empire Entertainment, Inc. - 100 Crosby Street, Suite 202 – New York, NY 10012
Tel. 212-343-1645

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