Dec 12 2018
The new independent market leader in Nordic live entertainment – All Things Live – is established with Waterland Private Equity as the majority shareholder following the acquisition of six leading companies ICO Concerts, ICO Management and Touring (Denmark), Friction and Atomic Soul Booking (Norway) as well as Blixten & Co and Maloney Concerts (Sweden). The All Things Live partnership will have combined annual revenue of around EUR 85 million and approximately 70 employees in Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
“Together with our great Norwegian and Swedish colleagues, we have created a series of memorable live experiences in recent years, and we are excited to join forces in All Things Live to strengthen our collaboration with a view to providing an even better offering to artists and fans across the Nordics,” says Pernille Møller Pedersen who is a co-owner of ICO Concerts and ICO Management and Touring together with Kim Worsøe, who adds: “Waterland has played a key role in the formation of this collaboration, and we look forward to leveraging their experience from other growth cases and capturing the opportunities in our markets in the coming years.”
As an independent player with strong local expertise in the Nordics, All Things Live will offer a range of activities across the live entertainment value chain including agency services, promotion and production.
“This is a natural next step for our businesses as we have always had a shared vision of creating great events based on our independence and deep local expertise. In All Things Live, we will be able to build significant scale, reach more people and attract more great artists going forward,” says Peer Osmundsvaag, founder of Friction and Atomic Soul Booking.
Co-owner of Friction, Mark Vaughan, adds: “We see an exciting future ahead of us in this strong partnership, which will be key player on the Nordic live entertainment scene going forward. Our dedicated employees will maintain their attention to detail and continue to attract local acts and international shows as part of the new setup.”
The partnership will cover the full spectrum from local Norwegian acts over Swedish musical productions and Danish stand-up events to stadium concerts with international artists such as The Rolling Stones, Green Day and Eminem. All Things Live will represent 140 local artists on exclusive contracts, promote almost 3,000 local and international events with more than 1 million tickets sold per year and continue to grow its current portfolio of 15 partnerships with large corporate clients.
“With the strategic and financial support of Waterland, we will be able to combine our in-depth knowledge and experience from our respective markets and accelerate growth as the leading independent entertainment player in the Nordics. This move will entail a lot of opportunities, and our business partners can rest assured that we remain dedicated to providing personal service and local expertise, while expanding our international reach together,” says Leif “Blixten” Henriksson, founder of Blixten & Co.
“We look forward to intensifying the collaboration among these great companies and strengthening our financial capabilities as part of the new partnership, which will drive value for audiences and artists on the Nordic scene,” says David Maloney, founder of Maloney Concerts.
The European market for live entertainment exceeds EUR 10 billion with annual growth rates of around 5% driven by artists’ increasing focus on live performances and the emergence of the experience economy, which has shifted large consumer groups’ preference from physical goods to live experiences. All Things Live will benefit from these trends and pursue additional revenue and earnings growth by leveraging the independent companies’ combined network, expanded geographical presence and increased fan reach as well as scale advantages.
“We see great prospects in these entrepreneurial companies, their management teams and employees as well as in the attractive live entertainment market. We are entering into this partnership and the formation of All Things Live to drive organic growth and further consolidation of the industry, and we will contribute to the development of the business with our strategic toolbox and extensive practical experience. This investment in these six companies is our second in the Nordic region after our office opening in Copenhagen in 2017, underlining our focus on expanding Waterland’s activities in the region,” says Kaspar Kristiansen, Managing Director, Waterland Nordic.
The transaction does not entail changes for customers, partners, day-to-day management or employees in the six independent and continuing companies, as market proximity remains a key focus area for the All Things Live partnership. The parties have agreed not to disclose price or additional details of the transaction.
About ICO Concerts and ICO Management and Touring
ICO is one of the leading independent Nordic promoters for more than 30 years. ICO promotes more than 500 shows yearly across the region in all genres with the main focus on concerts and international comedy shows – from small capacity clubs with up and coming new acts, to 50,000 capacity stadiums, and works with artists such as Sam Smith, Rammstein, Katy Perry, Michael Bublé, Dolly Parton, Rolling Stones, Michael McIntyre and Andrea Bocelli. ICO has been producing a large number of shows with Prince and organized the totally sold out tour “Piano & Microphone” in Australia and Canada as well as his very last show ever in Atlanta, USA. ICO is today the European tour promoters for Diana Krall and James Taylor. The Danish division ICO Management & Touring is headed by Christoffer Olsen and represents some of Denmark’s biggest comedians including Simon Talbot, Ruben Søltoft, Adam & Noah and many more.
About Friction and Atomic Soul Booking
Atomic Soul (Friction AS & Atomic Soul Booking AS) is the largest independent concert promoter and agency in Norway. Responsible for more than 1,000 events in Norway and abroad in 2018, they are the market leader in terms of numbers of concerts and their boutique style attention to detail. The agency side of the business represents a wide array of Norway´s largest acts including Susanne Sundfør, Unge Ferrari, Arif, Bigbang, Kari Bremnes and many others. As a concert promoter, they arrange everything from small club shows to festivals and stadium shows with acts like Eminem, Justin Bieber, Prince, Michael Bublé and Rammstein.
About Blixten & Co
Blixten & Co is one of Sweden’s leading companies in live entertainment, representing more than 70 of Sweden’s most prominent artists and working with entertainment in as diverse areas as music, humour, dance, theatre, lectures and conference work. Blixten & Co produces concerts, shows, musicals and theatre performances for both fixed scenes and tours throughout Scandinavia.
About Maloney Concerts
Maloney Concerts is the largest independent live music promoter in Sweden. Working with some of the greatest artists in the World, the company also has a very strong commitment working with new artists and developing their live music careers in the Nordic region. Maloney Concerts’ aim is to offer personal service to clients and collaborate to create the best live entertainment experience possible. Artists promoted by Maloney Concerts include, among others, Green Day, Justin Bieber, J.Cole, Post Malone, Celine Dion, Britney Spears, Santana, Morrissey and Sabaton.
Waterland is an independent private equity investment group that supports entrepreneurs in realizing their growth ambitions. With substantial financial resources being deployed from its seventh fund, standing at EUR 2 billion, and committed industry expertise, Waterland enables its portfolio companies to achieve accelerated growth both organically and through acquisitions. To date, Waterland has made investments in over 450 companies. Waterland ranks as the number 2 global private equity firm in the eighth annual HEC/Dow Jones Private Equity Performance Ranking in December 2017 and as number five in Preqin Consistent Performers in Global Private Equity & Venture Capital Report 2017, which ranks the most consistently performing global buyout funds. Waterland currently manages EUR 6 billion of investor commitments and has offices in Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, UK, Switzerland and Poland.