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Nolan Gallagher’s time running Gravitas Ventures will soon come to an end.
After 17 years, the founder and CEO will depart the distribution company as of March 31, after which time he will focus on an upstart Major League Soccer Next Pro men’s professional soccer team in Cleveland. The team is scheduled to begin league play in 2025. Per today’s news, Gravitas owner Anthem Sports & Entertainment — a multinational media company founded by Leonard Asper — is expected to announce new leadership in the coming months.
He won’t be relocating to Cleveland as he’s already there. In 2019, Gallagher and Gravitas co-owners Michael Murphy and Brendan Gallagher moved the company to the Ohio city in a bid to “further economic momentum for media and entertainment in their hometown,” per the company. The soccer team is the latest push to continue those efforts.
In a statement about his exit, Gallagher explained that the “time is right” to focus on his next chapter, one that includes this men’s team as well as (“hopefully soon”) a professional women’s soccer team.
“I, and by extension Gravitas, have been so fortunate to have collaborated with so many talented directors, producers, actors and media executive over the last 17 years. To have had a front row seat and active hand in the birth, growth and maturation of how audiences enjoy compelling stories on video on demand has been personally and professionally rewarding,” Gallagher said. “I am thankful to the entire Gravitas team past and especially present and wish them and Len Asper and Anthem Sports and Entertainment continued success in the years to come.”
Asper, in return, thanked Gallagher for his leadership as he sets off on “his next entrepreneurial journey” in his hometown of Cleveland. “In the last year, Nolan has worked closely with the Anthem executive team to hire and promote from within the next chapter of Gravitas’ leadership and to help ensure Gravitas’s filmmakers, producers and stakeholders continue to receive world class service. We are working with Nolan and have retained an advisor to identify a successor to lead the excellent senior team at Gravitas and expect to make a decision within the coming months.”
Under Nolan’s leadership, Gravitas built up a theatrical and Video on Demand distribution business with a catalog that now numbers upwards of 3,000 films. Recent releases include the wide theatrical play for the Diane Keaton-starrer Mack & Rita, which came out Aug. 12 under the newly-launched Gravitas Premiere label, as well as The King’s Daughter directed by Sean McNamara, Queen Bees from director Michael Lembeck, and Our Friend from helmer by Gabriela Cowperthwaite and starring Casey Affleck, Dakota Johnson and Jason Segel.
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