Industry News

SMG back on the market

Venue management company SMG has been placed up for sale once more, according to multiple reports.

The SportsBusiness Journal reported that any potential sale could be worth $750m (£572m/€640m).

The Journal noted that sports and entertainment company Oak View Group has been banned from submitting a bid for the venue management company.

Oak View Group recently acquired facility management firm Pinnacle Event Services and subsequently formed OVG Facilities.

“We were told that we couldn’t bid,” Oak View Group chief executive Tim Leiweke told the Journal. “I don’t know if it’s because of our purchase of Pinnacle or years of competing with (SMG during Leiweke’s tenure as AEG’s president and chief executive). Who knows? So, we’ve stood down and are focused on growing Pinnacle. We’re proceeding with our own route.”

A source advising a potential buyer added to the Journal: “There’s a history there (with Leiweke). Ten years ago, when SMG was sold to American Capital, AEG plucked away a bunch of SMG employees. There may be some bad blood.”

SMG operates a number of venues across the world. Its UK portfolio includes venues such as Leeds’ First Direct Arena (pictured), Manchester Arena, Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena and the Aberdeen Exhibition & Conference Centre in Scotland.

This is the second time in two years that SMG has been placed up for sale. According to the Journal, bids for the company are due later this month.

Image: Mtaylor848