AEG Finds A Home

Thomas Ovesen says he expects to have set up AEG Middle East’s offices and have the company up and running in plenty of time to stage a major event in May.

The U.S. entertainment giant is scheduled to open up in Dubai Media City early April, by which time he’ll have gone through all the bureaucratic procedures involved in setting up a new business in the Emirates.

"We have all the permissions and approvals, and so now it’s just a question of getting the actual documentation through", he explains.

With Ovesen setting up AEG within two months of him leaving Mirage Promotions, and within a month of Elissa Murtaza selling 65 percent of that company to Live Nation, the world’s two largest live entertainment outfits have landed on UAE soil together.

Ovesen thinks it’s a key time to enter the market because, however much it’s developed in the last five years, the real boom will come in the next 18 to 26 months.

He believes that’s the time he has to build a business with a range of revenue streams that will come from ensuring the region is on as many AEG tours as is possible, promoting other acts on one-off visits, developing the parent company’s portfolio of managed venues, and working with the corporate clients that have stuck with him after his six years at Mirage.

"The corporate business is still very important here because so many of the companies would rather spend money on their own private shows, rather than sponsor the commercial shows," Ovesen said.

AEG is expected to announce details of its first Middle East show within the next two weeks. Full contact details for the new company will be published shortly, although [email protected] is already online.