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ICM Partners Acquires U.K. Music Agency Primary Talent International

ICM Partners
Courtesy of ICM Partners

COVID-19 forcing thousands of live event cancelations and mounting losses as governments crack down on movement and gatherings.

ICM Partners has made its first major move since taking on its first private equity investment three months ago.

The company has acquired London-based music agency Primary Talent International, which books for more than 900 artists, including alt-J, Catfish and the Bottlemen, Daft Punk, Dave, Dropkick Murphys, Justice, Lana del Rey, Noel Gallagher, Patti Smith, Phoenix, Stormzy, The 1975, The Cure, The Pussycat Dolls and Two Door Cinema Club. That roster will now live alongside that of ICM's international touring business, which includes Ari Lennox, Blackbear, Boyz II Men, Charlie Wilson, City Girls, Earthgang, Good Charlotte, J. Cole, Jon Bellion, Khalid, Limp Bizkit, Migos, Sinead O'Connor, $uicideboy$ and YBN Cordae.

"Primary has long been one of the premier independent music agencies in London, if not the world, that I've always admired," ICM co-head of worldwide concerts Rob Prinz said in a statement. "After years of trying to find ways to work together, I'm very excited to now have that opportunity."

Primary, which marks its 30th anniversary this year, will continue to operate under its own name and in its existing offices, with its personnel – under the leadership of directors Peter Elliot, Matt Bates, Ben Winchester, Andy Woolliscroft and Peter Maloney – intact.

"We will continue to see Primary prosper and grow, with now additional opportunity to offer our clients the scope and resources of a major agency if they choose to take advantage of it," Bates said in a statement. Added Elliot, "We're very proud of what Primary has achieved over the years and excited by what the partnership with the dynamic and progressive team at ICM will enable us to do moving forward. Exciting times."

When ICM sold a minority stake to Crestview Partners in December, CEO Chris Silbermann said that the agency would remain focused on the representation business and would use the capital in part to grow internationally.

"This deal greatly enhances our ability to serve our clients on a global scale, through added resources, support and even greater opportunities, which is our top priority," he said in a statement announcing the Primary deal. "Primary is well-known for being fiercely independent, which we love about them. We are honored that they believed we were the right partners to help take their clients and their agency to the next levels of success, while retaining their brand and management identity and philosophy."

This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.


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