Founded in 2011, Royalty Exchange started after identifying the need for a centralized marketplace where royalty owners could monetize their royalties and investors seeking to purchase alternative assets could invest in them. Our mission is simply to provide a platform where all types of royalty assets, such as music, television and film or patents, intellectual property, and mineral rights, can be bought or sold in an effort to bring value to both the investor and seller.
Meet Our Team
Co-Founder and CEO
Sean has started several companies and spent the last several years developing SongVest. SongVest is the only marketplace that sells entertainment royalties as high end memorabilia, with auctions that have included the rights to songs recorded by Aerosmith, Bon Jovi, Carrie Underwood, Ringo Starr, Ozzy Osbourne, and The Monkees. Through this experience, he has identified an untapped market: selling royalties as income streams for new buyers.
His previous experience spans working for one of the largest privately held software companies in the world selling to fortune 1000 companies, to starting the alliance organization in Latin America, to running global alliances and selling into public sector.
Director of Operations
With a background in engineering, Molly has almost a decade of operations experience. During this time she held multiple sourcing and operations positions at two Fortune 500 companies (Lenovo and IBM), enhancing operations, negotiating key partnerships, and leading an international team. Molly was responsible for ensuring multi-million dollar transactions and relationships were managed and maintained properly.
In conjunction with large corporation experience, Molly has also worked on several entrepreneurial ventures in different capacities. Some of these include: negotiating residential subdivision sales between developers and builders, an operations consultant for startup Varia Rocks, and running her own websites for products and art.
VP of Marketing
An online business and publishing veteran, Sean has played key roles in both start-ups and large industry leading organizations. He began his career working with independent feature films in Southern California but migrated to print magazine publishing and then on to the web in the late 90s. He drove the launch of start-up Bettermanagement.com, an international business management information portal, out or Portland Oregon, and expanded it globally into Europe, Latin America, Australia and Asia. It was subsequently sold to SAS Institute, the largest privately held software company in the world, out of North Carolina.
During the past seven years he has led the digital media management and growth efforts for the Disney Owned ABC Broadcast station out of North Carolina, working with local and national digital teams at ABC News, ESPN, Good Morning America and Disney Hyperion Publishing.
Brian is a senior sales executive and leader recognized for his ability to build adaptive high performance, motivated sales teams. His unique talents in leading sales teams are supported by his strong business acumen, pioneering spirit, competitive drive, and enterprising approach to strategic customer focused selling.
His sales leadership and creative execution of a long-term strategic vision, stem from 25 years of experience. Brian has distinguished himself in leadership roles at several international software and technology companies, including IBM, BAAN, SAS and AMD. For many years, he founded and led a Sales Consultancy firm. It was there he blended his passions for revenue growth and entrepreneurship for his clients.
Co-Founder and VP of West Coast Sales
The five time Grammy-nominated Reggie Calloway has always displayed a unique ear for music and trends. It is no surprise that the music pioneer received a Grammy nomination for R&B Songwriter of the Year for the hit song “Casanova” in 1987.
Best known as the founder and leader of one of the most popular Techno-funk bands, Midnight Star, Calloway led the group to international success by writing, producing and arranging a string of top mega #1 hits including, ” Operator”, “No Parking On The Dance Floor”, “I Wanna Be Rich” and “Freak-a-zoid”.
One of Calloway’s original compositions entitled, “I’ll Be Good For You”, was featured on N’Sync’s multi-platinum CD, “No Strings Attached” (highest selling album of the last decade). He has also penned songs for the chart toppling group, Levert, (“Casanova”), the sultry Teddy Pendergrass (“Joy”), the Grammy winning Gladys Knight, (“Love Overboard”) and “Jump Start My Love” for Natalie Cole.
Co-Founder and Director of Marketing
Recently featured as one of Forbes’ 30 Under 30 in Music, Wilson Owens has experienced almost every aspect of the entertainment business. Coming from a family of movie actors, film directors, musicians and entrepreneurs, he decided to follow suit by intertwining his knowledge of technology and music.
Owens’ path began at Press Here Publicity in NYC, a PR firm that has dealt with The White Stripes, Stone Temple Pilots, Allison Krauss, Def Leppard, Mos Def and TV on the Radio. In 2009, he became involved at the prestigious independent record label: Merge Records. Boasting an all-star roster of bands including Arcade Fire, Spoon, Superchunk and She & Him, Owens surrounded himself with very successful members of the music industry.
In 2011, Owens began work at Virante, a nationally recognized SEO Marketing firm, as a SEO Analyst. Before founding the Royalty Exchange with Peace and Calloway, he also served as the Digital Marketing Manager at Health Decisions, a leading clinical research organization renowned for innovative analytical and data driven strategies in managing clinical trials.
VP of East Coast Sales
Preston Sullivan, a serial entrepreneur, has amassed over 35 years in the business of music and technology. Since graduating from Vanderbilt University in 1977 (Preston was a member of the 1974 Peach Bowl team), he started and ran successful ventures from LA to Nashville. Though a popular entertainer, singer and sax player on the west coast, Sullivan decided to move back to his beloved city of Nashville from Los Angeles and made the transition from artist to music executive in the years that followed.
He built and launched companies such as college rock label Carlyle Records with offices in Nashville and Amsterdam, Preston Sullivan Music, ASCAP and Surespin Songs BMI with current copyrights associated with Universal Music Publishing and Cal IV Music. He was in-house producer and studio manager for Sixteenth Avenue Sound whose world renowned clients recorded over 80 platinum and gold records.
In 1997 Sullivan jumped into the technology sector and co-founded the successful dotcom Tappedinto.com later called Streamlogics, a pioneer in webcasting and the streaming video business. Sullivan helped lead the company in global sales that resulted in a profitable sale in 2009 to Thomson Reuters.
Rusty Harmon, a North Carolina State University alumni, began his career in the music industry as the manager of one of the greatest selling bands of all time, Hootie and the Blowfish. Harmon managed the band’s career from 1989 – 2001, selling more than 25 million records, winning 2 Grammy’s, MTV, Billboard, People’s Choice, and World Music Awards.
After leaving the band in 2001, Harmon began his own management company which launched the career of Jason Michael Carroll. Harmon signed Carroll to recording contract with Arista Records which led to his debut #1 record in 2007. Shortly afterwards, Harmon relocated from Raleigh, NC, to Nashville. Harmon eventually landed a position with Average Joes Management in 2011. In 2012 Harmon was named President of Average Joes, and worked with artists such as Colt Ford, The LACS, and others.
With the birth of his 3rd daughter recently, Harmon has come back home to North Carolina. Now, after a successful 25 year career in the music industry, Harmon is bringing his experience with songwriters, producers, artists, and entertainers to Royalty Exchange.
Mark began his career playing music on the east coast. During that time he began doing web development and e-commerce for other musicians such as Bruce Hornsby, Little Feat, Allison Moorer, Steve Earle and many others. He has also worked closely with Deep South Entertainment, Choice Merchandise and Gold Village Entertainment.
After the road, Mark began doing development for clients such as Amtrak, Cup A Joe, NC State and Duke University. Before joining the Royalty Exchange he built web-based social learning applications for a nationally recognized company specializing in evidence-based interventions.
Board of Advisors
Jonathan Hoenig is Managing Member at Capitalistpig Hedge Fund LLC, a private investment partnership specializing in absolute return and alternative assets.
A former floor trader at the Chicago Board of Trade, Hoenig’s first book, Greed is Good: The Capitalist Pig Guide to Investing was published by HarperCollins and named one of Money’s “Best of 1999″. His documentary film, PIT TRADING 101, was released in 2014.
He is frequently quoted in the financial press and has written for publications including The Wall Street Journal Europe, Wired, Maxim, The Chicago Sun-Times and Smartmoney.com. Hoenig has been featured in numerous publications including The Wall Street Journal and Institutional Investor.
Active in social media and as a corporate speaker, Jonathan was named one Crain’s “Forty Under Forty”. He is a member of the Economic Club of Chicago, a regular Fox News Channel Contributor and proponent of Ayn Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism.
Lipsky Music LLC Owner and President
Tom Lipsky is a music industry veteran whose companies have consistently been among the market leaders in the veteran artist space. Past labels under Lipsky’s direction, CMC International Records (a joint venture with BMG Entertainment) and Sanctuary Records Group, achieved Gold and Platinum for Neil Young, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Kiss, The Allman Brothers Band, Bad Company, Styx, Widespread Panic, Megadeth, REO Speewagon and more. Lipsky was aresponsible for new releases by Lenny Kravitz, Rush, Rob Zombie, The Steve Miller Band, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Collective Soul, Meat Loaf and Skynyrd in a recent joint venture with Roadrunner Records, a division of Warner Music Group. Current label Loud & Proud Records is distributed in North America by RED, a division of Sony Music Entertainment, with international distribution by Sony Music Germany, Sony Music France, Sony Music Australia, and UK indie RSK Entertainment LTD. Loud & Proud’s initial artist roster includes critically singer/songwriter Willie Nile, rock supergroup The Winery Dogs, Seattle innovators Walking Papers, and classic rockers Starship featuring Mickey Thomas.
Entertainment Industry Consultant and Business Advisor
Don Perry has more than 30 years experience in the international entertainment industry representing Fortune 500 companies (e.g., Coca Cola, AFLAC, etc.). For the past 12 years, Don has acted as an in-house consultant for Greenberg Traurig’s Entertainment Practice group. Prior to joining the firm, Don served as President and CEO of Kaper Records and as President of Kane Productions. He currently acts as a consultant to numerous media and entertainment companies, with areas of concentration including integrated marketing and corporate brand development, major record label and record executive consulting, representation of artists, athletes and celebrities, and entertainment investing.
Owner at Evershift and Founder of AME Info
Klaus Lovgreen founded AME Info in 1996 and launched initially as a CD-ROM business directory for the Middle East. AME Info became the leading provider of business and financial information in and about the Middle East and was the first online media in the region to be audited by the Audit Bureau of Circulations (UK) in 2005. In March 2005, HSBC Private Equity Middle East Ltd. acquired significant equity stake in AME Info FZ LLC and on the 4th of July 2006, London-based Emap plc (EMA.L) announced that Emap Communications, its business-to-business (B2B) division, acquired AME Info.
Lovgreen invested into a number of technology companies from 2008 onwards including Tradeshift, Wordy, Oxis Energy, Gridiant Corp, Malaysia.com and Everbread among others. In 2011 the Telegraph named Lovgreen the 55th most influential technology investor in Europe. Lovgreen founded Evershift limited in April 2011 to make direct investments and provide various advisory services. Evershift made its first significant investment into APSU.com – a merged managed services and infrastructure business in the UK during the summer of 2011 and went onto investing into music royalties.
Co-Founder of Flip Media and Tech Investor
Martin grew up in Leipzig, Eastern Germany and later on studied International Management with focus on Finance and Marketing at Bradford’s Management Center. He also has a Master’s degree in Computer Science from London’s City University.
In 2004, Martin Diessner co-founded Flip Media, which later became the leading digital media and marketing company across the Middle East. In December 2006, HSBC Private Equity Middle East Ltd. acquired a significant equity stake in Flip Media. In January 2012, Flip was sold to Paris based Publicis Groupe (third largest communications group in the world) and folded into Leo Burnett Worldwide.
In 2008, Martin retired from the day-to-day operation of the business and since then has invested into various companies including The Royalty Exchange, Wordy, Vice Versa, Malaysia Travel, Oznium and many others.
Chief Executive Officer of 20 Gates Management
Hans Bald, Founder & Chief Executive Officer of 20 Gates, has over 20 years’ experience in structured finance and is one of the leaders in the industry. Prior to starting 20 Gates, he spent 10 years heading up the Conduits and Credit Products Group within Fixed Income at Credit Suisse, responsible for the structuring, purchase, and portfolio management activities of Alpine Securitization Corp ‐ coordinating the firm’s secured lending activities. Along with his asset backed conduit responsibilities, Hans was also responsible for the ABCP trading desk and the Auction Rate Securities Desk.
Previously, Hans was the head of the debt origination unit at Smith Barney responsible for CP, CD and MTN programs. From 1987 to 1994 he held various positions within Merrill Lynch’s Money Markets Division, including Product Manager for Commercial Paper. Hans received his BBA in Finance from Ohio University and his MBA from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.
Managing Director of 20 Gates Management
Josh Borg, a co‐founder and Managing Director of 20 Gates Management, has over 15 years’ experience in structured finance and asset management. Joining Credit Suisse in 2000, he grew to be a Director in the Conduit and Credit Products Group, covering esoteric ABS, CDOs, synthetics, U.S. munis, distressed workout and balance sheet/regulatory capital solutions. In this role, he assembled over $20 billion in synthetic balance sheet CLO transactions. He was also instrumental in the bank’s effort to actively manage down exposures in investment vehicles to maximize asset recovery.
From 1997‐2000, Mr. Borg worked on the buy side at CGA Investment Management, a boutique asset manager specializing in mezzanine ABS, MBS and CMBS sectors. From 1994 to 1997, he held various positions in Fixed Income Trading at Wells Capital Management, the asset management arm of Wells Fargo Bank. Josh received his BA in Economics from Occidental College and is a Chartered Financial Analyst.