Hazot Sells To Warner

Leading French promoter Salomon Hazot has sold his Paris-based Nous Productions to Warner France, although he’ll continue to run the company and his festival business isn’t affected.

It means Warner now has a significant slice of the French live music market. Two-and-a-half years ago the US major bought Jean-Claude Camus Productions, the concert promoter of Michel Sardou, Christophe Maé and of French legend Johnny Hallyday.

In two swoops the American music company has gobbled up one of France’s leading developers of homegrown talent and one of its biggest promoters of international acts.

In neither case has the value of the deal been revealed, although Hazot’s admitted that half of what he was paid came as soon as he’d signed the papers. His new Warner contract should see him stay in place for at least four years.

It’s the second time in a month that a major music company has bought into a major European promoter. In the middle of June Sony Music purchased a major share in Hungarian live music promoter ShowTime Budapest.

“It’s a bit part of the history of the business today,” Hazot told Pollstar, pointing out that corporate expansion involving the purchases of businesses and people has been going on for the decade since SFX Entertainment rolled into Europe.

He formed Nous five years ago, having spent 25 years at Garance Productions.

“I smiled when the cheque came because the company’s operation hasn’t changed,” he said. He and his dozen or so staff will continue working in the same way as they have since the company was started.

Major clients include Red Hot Chili Peppers, Black Eyed Peas, Metallica, Robbie Williams, Green Day, and German pop act Tokio Hotel. This year’s diary includes shows with Linkin Park, Massive Attack, Keane, Sum 41, Amy Macdonald, Patrice, Plan B, and Blink 182.

Hazot will also keep ownership of his festival business, which includes Rock En Seine and Hellfest. In October he expects to announce another new festival to start in 2011, when he’ll also be promoting France’s first Sonisphere Festival.