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DEAG in M&A hunt as figures reveal 2022 resurgence

Deutsche Entertainment AG (DEAG) has confirmed “concrete talks with potential acquisition targets” in the ticketing space after a second-quarter surge in revenue capped an encouraging recovery in the first six months of this year.

In revealing its figures for the first half of 2022, DEAG revealed that income had rocketed by 109% to €133.4m (£114.3/$133.8m) in comparison with the first half of 2019 when €63.9m was generated in a pre-pandemic landscape.

First-half earnings before tax and deductions (EBITDA) of €10.1m – 226% higher than the corresponding period in 2019 – are expected to improve further by the end of this year.

DEAG cited successful international expansion and a prosperous event pipeline for its figures, with revenue now expected to surpass €300m this year.

The company also hailed the integration of a number of companies in recent years, including Fane Productions, Gigantic.com and C² CONCERTS, whilst also citing the recent takeover of electronic music festival Airbeat One as an example of their optimism and ambitions.

“DEAG plans to continue playing an active role in the consolidation of the live entertainment industry in the future and to drive its growth through M&A,” DEAG stated.

“One focus here is on complementary ticketing acquisitions. The company is currently engaged in concrete talks with potential acquisition targets.”

DEAG also noted the impact of “catch-up effects in the live entertainment industry” on 2022 figures, referring to a post-COVID-19 resurgence experienced by many operators after pandemic restrictions were relaxed in various territories.

In addition, DEAG does not appear to be expecting the boom of 2022 to run out of steam imminently, in spite of dire projections about a squeeze on consumer spending in a number of key markets this winter.

DEAG stated that “the first quarter of 2023… will be very strong” and added: “DEAG is confident for financial year 2022 and optimistic with regard to its development beyond 2022.”

DEAG sold over three million tickets between June and August 2022 alone, and the company’s CEO, Professor Peter L.H. Schwenkow, anticipates “one of the strongest third quarters in the company’s history”.

The latest figures show an acceleration in DEAG’s recovery after the company posted revenue of €31m in the first quarter of 2022.

Schwenkow added: “Our teams have done a great job and held all of the events planned, despite material shortages and a lack of skilled workers in all markets.

“Our thanks also go to the many fans and guests at our events. After more than two years of the corona pandemic, people are eager to attend concerts and enjoy good entertainment. In some cases, visitors have kept tickets for up to three years in order to be able to be part of the restart of the event industry.”

DEAG’s major shows in the first six months of this year featured Ed Sheeran in the UK and performances by KISS and Zucchero in Germany. In Switzerland, concerts featured Die Ärzte, Die Toten Hosen and Iron Maiden.

International literature festival lit.COLOGNE and Germany’s largest philosophy festival, phil.cologne, were also successful, while Nature One, Belladrum and Sion sous les étoiles have been among the company’s sold-out open-air events this summer.

Looking ahead to the winter, Christmas Garden locations will be added in Italy and Poland, among other places.

Image: Nainoa Shizuru on Unsplash

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