Asia: Ultra China, Unusual

Ultra China Arrives

Popular electronic dance music festival Ultra is expanding to Shanghai this fall.

Ultra Music Festival announced last week that the event will take place Sept. 9-10 at the Shanghai Expo Park with two stages confirmed so far.

A third stage featuring hip-hop acts is rumored to be in the works.

The lineup will include Carl CoxThe ChainsmokersCurtisMOTiNic Fanciulli, Sasha b2b with John Digweed and many others.

Ultra China will partner with the vendors of the popular tourist destination Tianzifang, which will be bringing local Chinese food, as well as arts and crafts, to the festival. Another partner is the new sports and entertainment company Banana Culture, represented by Wang Sicong, who, according to local media, is the son of “China’s richest businessman.”

Singapore Concert Company Goes Public, Promises Expansion

Unusual, the company that is bringing Justin Bieber to Singapore in October, made its initial public offering in April after two decades in business.

Since then the share price has surged 158 percent, according to the Straits Times. Unusual’s CEO, Leslie Ong, told the paper that he means to justify the valuation by expanding his company’s business into China. He wants to double the number of shows he organizes by next year, mainly in China’s “second-tier cities,” as well as other capitals in Southeast Asia.

“These cities have great potential because of their population and because there aren’t many concerts there,” he told Straits Times, specifying smaller Chinese cities like Wuxi and Wuhan, where, he says, “the crowds are hungry for such events.”

The main problem will be to secure venues, most of which are privately operated, but Ong says he is already in talks with a venue operator who owns multiple exhibition halls throughout China.

Unusual is also looking into acquiring ticketing platforms and buying rights to children’s shows and sporting events.