Julie will be adding her expertise and knowledge of finances as Underknown’s new CFO.
Underknown is thrilled to welcome Julie Hope as its new CFO, taking over the role from Dennis Dupuis. She comes to the company with over 25 years of CFO and COO experience, working at both large companies and a number of startups. Her specialty, building strategic plans and financial models, makes her the perfect fit to help lead Underknown into a new period of growth.
Julie comes to Underknown by way of a career-long relationship with Richard Wilks, Underknown’s Head of Legal and Business Affairs. “I’ve known Julie from her earliest days in the industry and she was always a top performer. With industry-specific experience and a brilliant financial mind, Julie brings to Underknown an incredible set of skills and a breadth of knowledge that is a perfect fit for our needs at this time. We couldn’t be more thrilled to have her join us at this critical juncture in the evolution of Underknown,” he says.
Julie’s illustrious career began with an interest in film, studying it at Queens College. However, she quickly realized that her skillset lay in film financing which led to her position as a CPA in the Entertainment Group of KPMG. She then found her way through various film production companies and eventually landed at CanWest (now Corus) where she became something of a ‘fixer’, putting her skilled financial brain to work. After working at CanWest and other large media companies, Julie shifted her focus to startups, working first for GlassBox (now Blue Ant Media) and then Chatter Research (recently acquired by Stingray). In her role at the latter, she brought Chatter from a pre-revenue company to a multi-million-dollar exit.
Now, at Underknown, she looks to provide the framework for the creative executives at the company to succeed. She will lead the charge on the cost structure of the company’s shows, and therefore help other members of the leadership team allocate assets accordingly. She describes it as the “nuts and bolts” of the company. Julie will also look to streamline some of the processes at Underknown and make everything more efficient so the storytelling it is best known for can truly thrive.
But it’s not just the storytelling Julie is intrigued by upon her entrance to the company. She sees enormous potential in StorySuite, Underknown’s proprietary software that uses data to help drive what content to produce and when and where to push it. Eventually, this technology will help the company predict what audiences will want – “I think that could be the lever that the company needs to become that billion-dollar asset”, Julie says.
Julie’s unique career in film and media finance will not only help Underknown web series content, but it will also help grow and inform Underknown Studios, which looks to take proven digital IP and convert it into longform series for TV and streaming. “We are excited to have Julie join our management team. As we launch our studio, we will have someone with a unique mix of production and technology finance experience helping to lead the way. Julie has done everything from capital raises to exits and produced TV shows of all budgets. We are delighted to have her,” Underknown CEO Steve Hulford says. Julie, in turn, is excited to help build Underknown and its shows into a global franchise. And her proudest achievement outside of work recently? She just made it to an A-level tennis team – so clearly hard work isn’t just a career for Julie, but a lifestyle.
To learn more about Julie’s professional accomplishments, visit her on LinkedIn.