AEG May Be Mystery Bidder

A consortium headed by FC Amager soccer club chairman Brian Mollerup has put in a tender to build a new arena in Copenhagen, but Pollstar has learned of a second bid.

Major Danish papers have speculated that AEG would partner with Mollerup, who said he has “one of the world’s leading event promoters” on board. But Mollerup is now believed to be working in cahoots with IMG, the global sports and entertainment management group with offices in New York, Los Angeles, London, Paris, Hanover, Lucca and Singapore.

Copenhagen council chief exec for culture and sport Carsten Haurum has confirmed that more than one bid was received by the Sept. 19 deadline, but said the city authority’s rules prevent him from disclosing the exact number or where they came from.

Prior to the deadline, AEG European vice president of facilities Brian Kabatznick declined to discuss whether his company had thrown its hat in the ring.

Flemming Schmidt, a director of Live Nation’s Copenhagen office, confirmed that his company hasn’t filed a bid.
Mollerup’s plans for the new venue – which can be configured to hold between 5,000 and 50,000 – include entertainment and soccer as FC Amager, the club Mollerup created, would play its home matches there.

The Copenhagen council has taken out a 200 million kroner ($38.3 million) loan to fund its stake in the multipurpose arena, which it hopes to develop as a public/private partnership, but Haurum is concerned the global credit crunch may put the kibosh on the whole deal.

“It’s happened at an unfortunate time, but perhaps we will have a better idea of where we stand at the end of the year,” Haurum told Pollstar. “We will negotiate with those that have put in tenders, but now they may find it more difficult to raise the money for the build.”

The new arena will be at Ørestad, which is being developed as a “new town” within the Danish capital, using the city’s Metro as the primary public transport grid and connecting the area with the rest of Copenhagen.

The area is dominated by the Ferring building – the highest steel structure in Denmark – and Fields, which is the largest shopping centre in Scandinavia.

Københavns Kommune’s deadline for considering rival bids is Dec. 19.