(CelebrityAccess) — German entertainment company Deutsche Entertainment Aktiengesellschaft (DEAG) solidified its foothold in the UK with the acquisition of British promoter and event organizer UK Live Limited through DEAG’s local subsidiary, Kilimanjaro Holdings Ltd.
With a track record that stretches back more than a decade, UK Live is one of the leading independent event promoters in the United Kingdom. The company has organized concerts with artists such as rag David, Kim Wilde, Rick Astley and the Kaiser Chiefs, and is active in the areas of artist booking, stage construction and event technology, as well.
Following the acquisition, UK Live founders and Managing Directors, Nick Billinghurst and Matt Smith, will stay on board as shareholders and will continue to oversee the venture in the long term.
The acquisition underscores DEAG’s commitment to the post-Brexit UK market, which has grown to become the company’s leading secondary market. DEAG already holds a majority stake in the UK ticketing vendor Gigantic Holdings Ltd, as well as The Flying Music Group, which it acquired in 2017 and Belladrum Festival in Scotland, which DEAG added in 2018.
As well, Kilimanjaro acquired a stake in Collective Form Ltd. in early 2021 and has expanded in Ireland with the founding of Singular Artists in 2020.
“In view of the positive development with regard to the vaccination situation in our core markets, we expect to see our business activities increasingly return to normal in the coming months. We are already setting the course for a continuation of our successful business development and can further expand our strong market position in the UK with the acquisition of UK Live. UK Live has its own productions and independently covers the complete infrastructure from stage set-up to technology. By focusing on the domestic market, UK Live’s business activities are hardly affected by the Brexit. The partnership with UK Live offers us potential, especially for our ticketing and live entertainment business. For example, we will offer tickets for UK Live events for sale exclusively through Gigantic.com,” commented Detlef Kornett, member of the Executive Board of DEAG.
“The acquisition of UK Live adds attractive events and concerts to our events portfolio,” commented Stuart Galbraith, CEO of Kilimanjaro. “Nick Billinghurst and Matt Smith have many years of experience in the live entertainment industry and have shaped UK Live from its early days with “Let’s Rock The Moor” with 1,000 visitors to a successful company with over a dozen festivals and countless concerts within only a few years. Today, the four series of events “Let’s Rock, Penn Fest, Friday Night Live Norwich, and Sunday Sessions” alone attract over 200,000 visitors annually.”
Nick Billinghurst, Managing Director of UK Live, adds: “We are very excited about our future collaboration with DEAG and look forward to driving our growth journey together. With DEAG, we have a strong partner on our side, with whom we are ideally positioned for the post-corona era. Together we will soon be presenting our audience with top-class concerts and events again. I am sure that both sides will benefit from our merger in the long term.”