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Sunday, August 11, 2013

Julliette Feld

Executive profile: Empire of clowns, ice and dirt
Chicago's Juliette Feld of Feld Entertainment, which owns Disney On Ice, Ringling and Monster Jam, is taking on Marvel's superheroes

 
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Juliette Feld, executive vice president of Feld Entertainment, is part of the third generation of Felds who produce such family entertainment as "Disney On Ice" and the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus. (James C. Svehla, Chicago Tribune / August 12, 2013)
From:  chicagotribune.com
 By Becky Yerak, Chicago Tribune reporter
August 12, 2013
For three generations, members of the Feld family have run their billion-dollar entertainment business as hands-on managers.

As producer of live-action shows "Disney On Ice," Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey circus and the Monster Jam truck extravaganza, Feld Entertainment Inc. has 3,000 employees and an outsider as its longtime president.

The hired hands, however, call few significant shots without input from the clan.
The Florida-based company has a significant presence in the Chicago area, with a production office in Aurora and a rising executive in Juliette Feld, 29, a University of Chicago alum who lives in the city and is helping lead the next generation of Felds.
"Marvel Universe Live," announced in March, will debut in July 2014 as the biggest production that Feld Entertainment has ever mounted. Juliette Feld is in the center of it, producing a global arena tour for a franchise best known through comic books and movies.

As a child, Feld had little interest in action heroes or motor sports. The company's assets also include 43 monster trucks, 45 elephants and large supplies of dirt nationwide.

"Now I'm having the boyhood I never had," she said.
 Feld Entertainment was born in 1967, when Juliette's grandfather, Irvin, bought Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey from John Ringling North. The deal was consummated in Rome's Colosseum, with a tiger cub in tow. In 1971, Mattel bought the business, though the Feld family continued to operate it. Under Feld management, Mattel branched out into ice shows, in 1979 buying the "Holiday on Ice" and "Ice Follies" productions from Chicago's Wirtz family, owner of the Chicago Blackhawks, for $12 million.
In 1982, the Feld family bought back Ringling, including the ice shows, and has held them privately ever since.

After Irvin Feld's sudden death in 1984, son Kenneth became CEO. He struggled to pay estate taxes on the half of the company that his father left him, and it took years to pay off the government.

Now, Kenneth Feld's three daughters all work for the company. Juliette, the youngest, joined the company as strategic planning director in 2010 and was promoted to executive vice president last year.

"Every show that gets made is touched by one of the three of us," Juliette Feld said in an interview in the Aurora office, which also houses TV and art production, sponsorship, licensing, and motor sports operations and support.

Feld Entertainment is completely owned by the family, including the daughters, as Kenneth Feld, 64, has been transferring his shares to them equally since 2001. His daughters are "involved in every major decision," he said, and there are no current plans to sell a stake in the business. He noted that "2012 was the best year in the history of the company in attendance, revenues and profitability."
 These days, he added, he considers his role as "mentor" and "sounding board."
read more:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-0812-executive-profile-juliette-feld-20130812,0,7268681.story?dssReturn&z=19901

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