LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess) — Management of the venerable Greek Theatre in Los Angeles has come up for bid again, with numerous contenders throwing their hats into the ring to run the iconic, but aging venue.
As reported in Billboard, the City will soon weigh bids from companies seeking to operate the amphitheater, with the contract term running from 2019 through 2028.
Bids to operate the venue were due at the end of January and according to Billboard, the bidders include SMG and Oak View Group.
“This is an opportunity that Oak View Group is pursuing aggressively,” Oak View Group’s Tim Leiweke told Billboard.
The Greek has been a contentious piece of Los Angeles property for some time. Long managed by Nederlander, the Greek Theatre in 2014 became the subject of an intense bidding war between Live Nation and a partnership between AEG and Nederlander. After numerous delays, the venue management concession was finally awarded to SMG, who were tasked with operating the Greek as an ‘open venue’ on behalf of the city for a year, with two one-year contract extensions included in the deal.
Complicating the current bidding process is the Greek Theatre’s age. First opened in 1930, the building last underwent a refurbishment in 2016 with upgrades that included new food and beverage options, a new coffee kiosk, a new bar, new LED video screens, improved suites and hospitality areas and an upgraded shuttle service.
However, much work remains to be done at the venue and according to Billboard, an estimated $50 million is still needed for repairs and maintenance at the Greek Theatre, including upgrades to seating, the stage, and the building’s historic architecture.
“It’s an older building, and it’s going to need continuous maintenance and upkeep,” Becky Colwell, who manages the Greek on behalf of SMG, told Billboard.
According to the Billboard report, the City of Los Angeles allowed contenders to offer to propose funding plans for the upgrades but isn’t expecting the venue operator to cover the current $50 million worth of needed maintenance.
“We’re looking for a certain amount of resources from a potential operator,” Department of Recreation and Parks GM Mike Shull told Billboard. “There’s many different criteria that go into the decision of who we select, including a unique business plan, sponsorships and revenue.”