Industry News

OVG seeks to move on as Co-op Live finally opens

Elbow open Co-op Live in Manchester on May 14

Featured Image Credit: Sophie Traynor

Elbow open Co-op Live in Manchester on May 14

Featured Image Credit: Sophie Traynor

Co-op Live has officially opened its doors, with Tim Leiweke, chairman and CEO of Oak View Group (OVG), stating that its price tag now stands at close to £450m (€523.4m/$566.9m) after the Manchester venue narrowly avoided a “catastrophic” incident earlier this month.

Following the delays and postponements that have blighted the 23,500-capacity arena, fittingly it was a local band that commenced proceedings yesterday (Tuesday) evening, with Elbow, who hail from the Greater Manchester town of Bury, playing in front of a crowd of around 12,000.

Leiweke told the Manchester Evening News: “I think people should stop kicking and start appreciating what we have here, and the impact it’s going to create for Manchester. People who want to kick it, kick it. But we’ve shut up, we’ve spent the past three weeks getting the building ready, and now we open up… and I think we will have long-term success.”

Read the full story on TheStadiumBusiness.com.

Take That break AO Arena record

Meanwhile, Take That, one of the acts whose Co-op Live performances were cancelled, has become the first band ever to play 50 shows at AO Arena, the rival ASM Global Europe-operated venue in Manchester.

The band’s ‘This Life On Tour’ featured a five-night run at the venue due to the shows being cancelled at Co-op Live. They reached the AO Arena milestone some 29 years after their first performance there.

‘This Life On Tour’ has sold over 700,000 tickets across 41 dates in 15 cities, making it the biggest-selling tour ticket sales for a UK artist this year. Last month, the band broke their own record for the most number of shows performed at The O2 in London, with their tally now totalling 39.

Jen Mitchell, general manager at AO Arena, said: “We’re delighted that we’ve been able to celebrate Take That’s 50th Show at the AO Arena, right here in the heart of the action. Not only do we enjoy having the band here, we love hosting their fans and making every moment memorable.”