Image Entertainment has corporate restructuring


A major corporate restructuring at independent DVD supplier and distributor Image Entertainment finds founder and CEO Martin Greenwald stepping down as president and COO David Borshell moving into the top management spot.

Industry veteran Bill Bromiley has been appointed chief acquisitions officer, and Rick Eiberg has been named executive vp, operations, and chief technology officer.

The three join longtime Image CFO Jeff Framer as executive officers of the company, based in Chatsworth, Calif.

Borshell, who has been Image since 1984, was senior vp of sales, marketing and operations from 1995 until 2000, when he was promoted to COO. Borshell will not retain the COO position, and successor has not yet been named. Image also does not plan to seek a replacement CEO, opting to make president the company's top executive position. As president, Borshell reports directly to the company's board of directors, chaired by Greenwald.

"The time is right for me to hang up my cleats," Greenwald said. "As both an Image shareholder and the chairman of the board, I congratulate David and look forward to him taking Image to the next level."

Borshell is credited with helping Image establish its digital distribution subsidiary, Egami Media, as well as its relationship with the prestigious Criterion Collection of premium DVDs. Borshell also drove Image's global expansion by developing strategic international distribution relationships.

Bromiley, a 20-year veteran of the film and home entertainment industries, will oversee Image's worldwide program acquisition efforts. He had spearheaded Image's feature film initiative as a consultant from June 2007 until he was hired by the company in January 2008. Before that, he spent seven years at First Look Home Entertainment, a division of First Look Studios, where he served as president at the time of his departure. Bromiley reports to David Borshell.

Eiberg will be in charge of Image's supply chain, distribution and technology. He's been with Image five years, most recently as senior vp of operations. Prior to joining Image Eirberg had spent 11 years at Bell Industries, a distributor, manufacturer and service provider, as vp of technology. He reports to Framer.

In addition, Michael B. Bayer adds the associate general counsel title previously held by Dennis Hohn Cho, who left the company March 31. Bayer retains his vp of business and legal affairs position. Bayer joined Image last October and is responsible for the oversight of negotiating and drafting content acquisition agreements and assisting executive management with the company's corporate legal affairs, including overseeing outside counsel as well as SEC and litigation matters.

"I believe that Image has one of the best executive management teams in our industry," Borshell said. "Jeff Framer and I have worked together for more than 17 years and are dedicated to Image's ultimate success. Bill Bromiley and Rick Eiberg provide the company with the expertise necessary to meet our goals while Michael Bayer brings studio-level knowledge and vast legal experience to the company."

Image has had a tough time these last few years, weathering a hostile takeover attempt by Lionsgate, its No. 2 shareholder, and a subsequent failed acquisition attempt by financier and producer David Bergstein's BTP Acquisitions Co. The unsuccessful deal led to a precipitous stock decline.

Still, Borshell helped salvage Image's distribution deal with T1 Holdings LLC for new and catalog ThinkFilm theatrical titles.

"The past couple of years have been trying times for shareholders, customers, business partners and employees alike," Borshell said. "With this in mind, the entire Image team is dedicated to bringing Image back to growth and profitability during the new fiscal year."

Image Entertainment has approximately 3,000 exclusive DVD titles and 250 exclusive CD titles in domestic release and about 450 programs internationally via sublicense agreements. For many of its titles, the company has exclusive audio and broadcast rights and through its Egami Media subsidiary has digital download rights to approximately 2,000 video programs and more than 300 audio programs containing more than 4,500 tracks.