Michael Smellie

Michael Smellie, Former Global COO for Sony/BMG, Asia Pacific head of BMG, MD of Polygram and rooArt in Australia.

As an Australian, with a career in the music business spanning over 25 years and across five continents, Michael has a unique view on today’s global business. Starting his career as Finance Director with Chappell Music Publishing in Sydney he soon moved to PolyGram (now part of Universal) and held senior finance positions in Australia, Brazil and the UK before returning to Sydney as Group MD.

After this, he served briefly as CEO of the MMA Group before being appointed MD for BMG in Australasia in 1993 and soon after, moved to Hong Kong as Head of the Asia/Pacific Region for BMG. In 2001 he was appointed as COO for BMG worldwide and moved to New York. In this role he directed the company through some turbulent years and was an integral part of negotiating and implementing the merger with Sony Music. He was appointed as COO of the newly formed Sony BMG in 2004 and left at the end of 2005 to return to Australia to spend more time with his family.

Michael still maintained a keen interest in the media business, taking on a new role as President of Media Development, Asia Pacific for German media giant Bertelsmann until the end of 2008. He is also an investor, advisor and Board member to a number of “start ups” in Australia and the US. He has been recently appointed as the Chairman of AFTRS.