Banker in MySpace Sale Eyes Davos-Type Conference in L.A.

James Montgomery, the banker who advised MySpace on its sale to News Corp., is renaming and reformatting his annual conference, borrowing elements of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, and TED Talks.

“OASIS: The Montgomery Summit,” an invitation-only event, will be held March 5 and March 6 at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica, California, according to an e-mailed statement from the organizer.

Montgomery is adding sessions with global finance leaders discussing the world economy. The decade-old conference has provided a showcase for startups in social media, mobile, analytics, and cloud computing to venture capital firms and other investors. Facebook Inc., Twitter Inc. (TWTR) and Pandora Inc. (P), presented at the conferences years before they went public.

“We’re going to take the first step to bring in visionary thought leaders that an attendee can find at the World Economic Forum in Davos or the TED Talks,” Montgomery, chief executive officer of Montgomery & Co., said in the statement. “OASIS is meant to become a big player in the global Innovation Society.”

Ashish Thakkar, founder of Mara Group, will discuss how his life experiences, including escaping genocide in Rwanda, shaped his perspectives on business in a session titled, “The Greater Meaning of Entrepreneurship.”

Bernardo Paz, a Brazilian mining magnate, who founded Inhotim, a 5,000-acre contemporary-art park in the country’s southeastern state of Minas Gerais, will talk about how innovation drives business and the arts.

Other keynote speakers will be announced next month, according to the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Andy Fixmer in Los Angeles at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at

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