Oak View Group Announces Strategic Investment From Silver Lake

Technology investment firm Silver Lake has made a strategic investment in Oak View Group, a diversified sports and entertainment company. Terms were not disclosed, but sources said it’s over a $100 million investment and Silver Lake receives an equity stake in the firm. 

Los Angeles-based Oak View Group (Pollstar and VenuesNow’s parent company), was co-founded in 2015 by Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff and runs multiple businesses, including: OVG Business Development; OVG Global Partnerships. OVG Media & Conference; Prevent Advisors, a security consulting division; and the Arena Alliance, a consortium of some 27 major market arenas (and two baseball stadiums) with collective leverage on buying, selling, booking and strategic planning.

Silver Lake, which is headquartered in Menlo Park, Calif. with offices in New York, London, Hong Kong and Tokyo, has about $39 billion in combined assets under management and committed capital.

Its portfolio includes investments in UFC, Endeavor and sports retailer Fanatics with total investments that generate more than $140 billion in annual revenue with companies employing more than 300,000 people worldwide.

As an arena developer, Oak View Group was recently awarded the rights to redevelop Key Arena in Seattle with partners David Bonderman and Jerry Bruckheimer.

The $600 million project is tied to OVG’s effort to secure an NHL expansion team in Seattle. Earlier this month the venue sold 33,000 deposits for season tickets.

In addition, OVG has partnered with New York Mets chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon and the New York Islanders to develop a new arena at Belmont Park for the NHL team.

Silver Lake’s investment will help support those two arena projects, OVG officials said. “In less than three years, Oak View Group has made a significant positive impact on the sports and entertainment facilities landscape,” OVG’s Leiweke said in a statement. “I am very proud of what we have accomplished in such a short time. This deal with Silver Lake provides us with capital to continue to grow our business as well as invaluable expertise and relationships. I am thrilled to have them as my partner.

“Technology’s impact on the global media and entertainment sectors has created new opportunities for OVG,” Lee Wittlinger, Managing Director at Silver Lake, stated. “We firmly believe that OVG is positioned to become a world-class franchise in sports and live events. We look forward to working with Tim, Irving, and their team of category experts as a strategic partner in the company’s next phase of growth.” Since forming in Nov. 2015, Oak View Group has grown to 200 employees with offices in Los Angeles, Seattle and New York.