Exec returns to Innovation Group

12 July 2007

ENVER, Colorado -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- The Innovation Group is proud to announce the return of Michael J. Soll as executive vice president.

Michael began his career with The Innovation Group in 1992 and left the company in 1997 as VP of gaming and hospitality research. Ten years later, he has come full circle by rejoining The Innovation Group and bringing with him a wealth of senior-level, hands-on experience in the gaming, lodging and financial industries.

"As executive vice president, Michael will use his skills and experience to benefit The Innovation Group clients in a range of high-level advisory oversight areas," said Stephen J. Szapor, Jr., president of the company.

With his background as an analyst and development specialist, Michael offers clients the ability to identify and evaluate the pertinent financial and site data on which they can base sound business decisions. As an asset manager, he applies his experience in capital planning, refinancing, negotiating and evaluating the viability of ventures. As a brand specialist, he understands the power and value of customer relationships and third party associations.

"In combination, Michael's talents and abilities will enable The Innovation Group to broaden the range of services we provide our clients," added Szapor.

Previously, Michael was VP of casinos for Hard Rock Café International, Inc., where he led asset management activities in the worldwide development for Hard Rock Casinos and their related hotel, condo and resort properties. He was responsible for the identification of potential U.S. and international opportunities and their execution. Michael also directed expansion projects for Hard Rock in the U.S., Asia, Europe, South America and the Caribbean. Prior to that, Michael was VP of planning and development for Caesars Entertainment in Las Vegas, where he managed the company's development efforts in existing and emerging U.S., international and Tribal gaming jurisdictions.

Michael has also served as the director of asset management at Starwood Hotels and Resorts and as VP of leisure equity research for Bear Stearns & Co. in New York.

"Though it's been 10 years since he left The Innovation Group, Michael has remained a friend and we've watched his career grow through several significant plateaus. We're thrilled to have him back in this position," said Steve Rittvo, chairman of The Innovation Group of Companies.

Michael holds a bachelor's degree from the University of Wisconsin and received his master's in urban and regional planning from The College of Urban and Public Affairs in New Orleans.


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