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Live Nation buys Denis Desmond’s MCD, via its JV with Denis Desmond

By | Published on Friday 17 August 2018

Live Nation

Live Nation has acquired Ireland-based concert promoter MCD Productions. Though it has done so through its joint venture with MCD owner Denis Desmond, which means that he will still own a 50% stake in the live music business he co-founded in 1980.

Live music giant Live Nation has had a long-standing partnership with Gaiety, the company owned by Desmond and his wife Caroline Downey. Many of Live Nation’s acquisitions in the UK in recent years have actually been via the LN-Gaiety joint venture, and Desmond himself now heads up the live giant’s UK and Ireland operations.

MCD had not been part of that JV previously, being wholly owned by Gaiety alongside Dublin venues the Olympia Theatre and the Gaiety Theatre. Following the recent transaction, MCD now sits under LN-Gaiety, meaning it is half owned by Live Nation. According to Irish music magazine Hot Press, the venues are not part of that deal, although Live Nation has had a role in their management since last year.

News of the MCD deal comes as Live Nation UK confirms the departure of one of its longest serving execs, Paul Latham, who has announced his retirement. Latham enjoyed a long career with the company through its various iterations, including as SFX and Clear Channel, taking on various roles in Live Nation’s UK and international operations, most recently as COO. He was also active elsewhere in the UK music industry through his work with UK Music and Creative & Cultural Skills.