Michael Karagosian is founder and president of MKPE. He is an astute leader in the development, protection, and marketing of new entertainment technologies, specializing in the theatrical exhibition (cinema), special venue, and theme park markets. Michael is a consummate deal maker, skilled in identifying strategic opportunities and structuring efforts for results. He is articulate in driving value and message and expert in leading collaborative efforts. His accomplishments include the negotiation of virtual print fee (VPF) subsidies with the major Hollywood studios for the purchase of up to $300M of cinema equipment in Ireland, Philippines, and South America. He was co-founder of CinemaAcoustics, a division of Peavey Electronics, and a member of the Board of Directors for pioneering 3D conversion company In-Three. He represented the interests of the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO) for 11 years during the development of digital cinema, leading collaborations with DCI and driving the formulation of standards. Michael brings over 30 years of experience to negotiations, intellectual property development, market strategy, product development, standards, and industry relationships.
Michael is an engineering graduate of U.C. Berkeley with graduate work at Santa Clara University and UCLA. He is a member of the AES, the ASC Technology Committee, and is a SMPTE Fellow. He was awarded the ShoWest Award of Appreciation for Contribution to the Advancement of Digital Cinema in 2006.
Michael's career began in Silicon Valley with Interdesign, where he designed semiconductor integrated circuits for Intersil, Burr Brown, Memorex, and others. His interests pulled him towards audio, first as an executive of consumer loudspeaker manufacturer DWD Audio, and later with Dolby Laboratories, where he led the development of Dolby's early cinema products for film. At Dolby, he developed the 70mm split surround format, introduced with the original release of Apocalypse Now, and precursor to 5.1 sound. He led the development of Dolby's flagship studio and cinema products in the early 80's. The Dolby CP200, his first full-featured cinema sound processor, became the reference sound processor for THX. Michael continued to explore audio for cinema as Chief Engineer for BGW Systems, where he oversaw development of crossover and amplifier systems for large format and special venue cinema. He founded MKPE Consulting driving large format cinema projects for Iwerks Entertainment.
With Dolby fellow Clyde McKinney in the 90's, Michael co-founded, and was President of, Cinema Group Ltd, responsible for product concept, marketing, and sales for the CinemAcoustics division of Peavey Electronics. CinemAcoustics offered the first complete line of THX-Approved sound equipment for cinemas, and its sales efforts extended worldwide. Michael's technology contribution was the CinemaMatrix™ digital matrix surround decoder, installed in top screening rooms including those of Skywalker Sound and Pixar. In the late 80's and 90's, he also consulted Walt Disney Imagineering in the development of animation control and sound systems for new attractions and theme parks.
In 2000, Michael was a founding member of the original SMPTE digital cinema standards committee, DC28, and continued to serve as a committee chairperson in the standards effort for 13 years. For 11 years, during the formation of digital cinema standards, Michael consulted the National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO), chaired the NATO Technology Committee, represented the exhibition industry in discussions with Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) during the development of the DCI Digital Cinema System Specification, and guided preservation of exhibitor business rights during development of the digital security model. He also led development of the NATO Digital Cinema Requirements, and led the industry in the development, standardization, and rollout of closed caption technologies for cinema.
Michael has made numerous contributions to digital cinema, leading innovations such as the digital cinema package (DCP), the Facility List Message (FLM) for security key management, the cinema industry's first standards for accessibility, and chairing studies on higher frame rates and laser illumination. He drove the first public demonstration of 3D at ShoWest in 2005. He consulted numerous companies in the development of new products or services for digital cinema, sharpening strategies and marketing efforts, reviewing intellectual property rights, and building industry relations. Michael was first to predict a pending "chasm" in equipment sales in 2007, in the midst of the early rollout of digital cinema.
Michael is a contributing author of Understanding Digital Cinema and the EC publication Digital Cinema Perspectives. He is the publisher of mkpeReport, MKPE's online publication studying the cinema technology marketplace. Michael has given over 40 public presentations on digital cinema, and written hundreds of articles on the subject, many of which have been translated in several languages.