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Live Nation bidding for venue company SMG

By | Published on Thursday 30 November 2017

Live Nation

Live Nation is reportedly among the bidders to buy SMG, the US-based company that owns and/or operates a plethora of entertainment venues across the world, including in the UK where, among other things, it has arenas in Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle and Belfast.

SMG’s current owners recently announced they were considering bids to buy the company and the deadline for offers was earlier this week. According to the SportsBusiness Journal, Live Nation is among the bidders.

Live Nation is already the dominant player in live entertainment worldwide, of course, with significant operations in tour and festival promotion, venue management, artist management and ticketing. When it comes to operating venues, that’s the one area where its main global rival AEG has the edge, but an SMG acquisition would provide a major boost to the venues side of Live Nation’s business.

Any deal would presumably be subject to competition regulator approval in at least some markets. And, of course, with the legal battle between Songkick and Live Nation going through the motions in the US, there is already increased attention – within the music community at least – about the live giant’s ever growing domination of the market.