Lucas Goes Live 360

Former Clear Channel Entertainment co-CEO Dave Lucas has hung his shingle as an independent promoter in Indianapolis, as expected, where he first jumped into the water with Sunshine Promotions 34 years ago.

Lucas Entertainment Group will launch its concert promotion wing, Live 360, May 8th with Good Charlotte and Simple Plan at the city’s Pepsi Coliseum. Plus, tickets were to go on sale April 30th for the BIG Summer Classic festival featuring The String Cheese Incident at Military Park in White River regional park July 10th.

Lucas expects to announce additional shows in coming weeks at venues throughout the market.

“I took some well-deserved time off and gave a lot of thought to what direction I wanted to go in,” Lucas told Pollstar. “After doing that, I decided I would first start off with the live entertainment part of the business, which I have with Live 360.”

Live 360 is the first wing of Lucas Entertainment Group, which intends to become a multifaceted live entertainment firm with four to five separate divisions doing business under their own names.

“Live 360 will be for presenting concerts. Bio Creative will be for creating marketing materials for the touring industry such as radio, video and print graphics. We’ll then have a touring arm that will have a different name, to be determined, and we’ll have a special events and experiences division to do things like music cruises,” Lucas explained.

He is introducing a somewhat different model than the typical concert promotion company with Live 360, which will provide additional services specifically geared to arenas.

“There are new income streams that have not existed previously for arenas. By being able to pull them into our model, it will allow them to be more competitive, more aggressive, to look at new ideas of packaging,” Lucas said. “This in no way intends to exclude local promoters, though.

“We want them on board. I’m going to be a facilitator. I’m going to help create the model that’s going to help not only the promoters’ business to grow, but also the arena business and give more opportunities to the touring artists out there.”

Noting that he is currently working with a very small staff, Lucas said he’d be expanding the ranks by year’s end with the addition of new divisions of LEG.

“I’ll be taking applications from all interested parties in November,” Lucas said.

He came to Clear Channel Entertainment as part of the roll-up of SFX, to which he sold his Sunshine Promotions in 1997.

Lucas spent more than two years at the top of CCE, as co-president and CEO along with Don Law, leaving after the conglomerate’s restructuring last fall that elevated Michael Rapino to the position of Global Music President/CEO. Law remains in Boston with CCE’s Tea Party Concerts office.

“I’m excited; I’m re-energized,” Lucas said of his return to promoting. “I was an independent promoter for 26 years and I worked for public companies in SFX and Clear Channel for seven years. I’ve started businesses and I’ve run large businesses. I enjoy being an entrepreneur and building new business and creating new ideas and models.”

In addition to launching the new company, Lucas also has a vision for creating a large new venue in downtown Indianapolis, one that could incorporate existing sites including a 10,000-seat venue with reserved seats that he hopes to bring online by spring 2006.

— Deborah Speer