All Things Live: Waterland Acquires Six Nordic Live Entertainment Companies

All Things Live
– All Things Live

Waterland Private Equity acquired majority stakes in six leading live entertainment companies in the Nordics: ICO Concerts and ICO Management and Touring in Denmark, Friction and Atomic Soul Booking in Norway, as well as Blixten & Co and Maloney Concerts in Sweden.

The umbrella organization was given the name All Things Live, and represents “the new independent market leader in Nordic live entertainment,” by its own admission. The All Things Live partnership will have combined annual revenue of around euro 85 million and approximately 70 employees in Denmark, Norway and Sweden.

The strong local expertise is to ensure that All Things Live can offer “a range of activities across the live entertainment value chain including agency services, promotion and production,” according to the announcement.

The partnership will cover the full spectrum from local Norwegian acts to Swedish musical productions and Danish stand-up events to stadium concerts with international superstars. All Things Live will represent 140 local artists on exclusive contracts, promote almost 3,000 local and international events that sell more than 1 million tickets annually and continue to grow its current portfolio of 15 partnerships with large corporate clients.

Pernille Moller Pedersen, a co-owner of ICO Concerts and ICO Management and Touring, said: “Together with our great Norwegian and Swedish colleagues, we have created a series of memorable live experiences in recent years, and we are excited to join forces in All Things Live to strengthen our collaboration with a view to providing an even better offering to artists and fans across the Nordics.”

The other ICO co-owner, Kim Worsoe, added: “Waterland has played a key role in the formation of this collaboration, and we look forward to leveraging their experience from other growth cases and capturing the opportunities in our markets in the coming years.”

To Friction and Atomic Soul Booking founder Peer Osmundsvaa, the investment marks “a natural next step for our businesses as we have always had a shared vision of creating great events based on our independence and deep local expertise. In All Things Live, we will be able to build significant scale, reach more people and attract more great artists going forward.”

Co-owner of Friction, Mark Vaughan, added: “We see an exciting future ahead of us in this strong partnership, which will be key player on the Nordic live entertainment scene going forward. Our dedicated employees will maintain their attention to detail and continue to attract local acts and international shows as part of the new setup.”

According to data gathered by Waterland, the European market for live entertainment exceeds €10 billion with annual growth rates of around 5 percent driven by artists increasing focus on live performances and the emergence of the experience economy.

The companies combined under the All Things Live banner aim to benefit from these trends and pursue additional revenue and earnings growth by leveraging the independent companies combined network, expanded geographical presence and increased fan reach as well as scale advantages.

Waterland Nordic managing director Kaspar Kristiansen commented: “We see great prospects in these entrepreneurial companies, their management teams and employees as well as in the attractive live entertainment market. We are entering into this partnership and the formation of All Things Live to drive organic growth and further consolidation of the industry, and we will contribute to the development of the business with our strategic toolbox and extensive practical experience. This investment in these six companies is our second in the Nordic region after our office opening in Copenhagen in 2017, underlining our focus on expanding Waterland’s activities in the region.”

According to the announcement, nothing’s going to change for either company’s customers, partners, day-to-day management or employees. The parties have agreed not to disclose price or additional details of the transaction.

Waterland is the later private equity firm to secure a huge stake in the booming European live entertainment business, following investments by Private Equity backed Superstruct investing in Finnish festivalFlow, or The Yucaipa Companies acquiring a minority equity stake in Spain’s PrimaveraSound, or Beyond Capital Partners acquiring a majority stake in German EDMpromoter BigCityBeats.