Live Nation has sold the remainder of its North American theatrical business to Key Brand Entertainment for a gross sale price of $90.4 million. The divestiture is part of Live Nation’s ongoing strategy to focus its core business on music operations.
As part of the sale, Key Brand Entertainment, owned by British theater producer John Gore, will acquire Live Nation’s Broadway Across America business, which presents Broadway shows in the United States and Canada. Key Brand Entertainment will also acquire Live Nation’s interest in three owned and five leased venues in Minneapolis (Orpheum Theatre, State Theater, Pantages Theatre), Boston (Colonial Theatre, Charles Playhouse), Baltimore (Frances-Merrick Performing Arts Center) and Toronto (Canon Theater, Panasonic Theater).
Live Nation’s North American theatrical business is estimated to have generated $208.1 million for the year ended Dec. 31, 2007. The Los Angeles-based company will use the net proceeds from the sale to repay borrowings and invest in its core music business.
Meanwhile, Live Nation will retain its lease for the Warner Theatre in Washington, D.C., and the Boyd Theatre in Philadelphia. The company will also retain its United Kingdom theatrical assets, which include 17 theaters, the Hilton Theatre in New York and the Boston Opera House.