The Underage Festival, staged in London’s Victoria Park in August for 14 to 18-year-olds only, is set to expand with an international presence.
Investment firm Ingenious Media co-promoted the one-day Underage Festival and the Field Day festival, through its live music venture capital trust Ingenious Live VCTs. The original investment deal with Waxarch Limited was made in July 2007 for the inaugural Underage and Field Day Festivals.
“A lot of our funding, certainly in the venture capital trust area, has been follow-on from success in investments we’ve made before,” Ingenious commercial director Duncan Reid told Billboard.biz. “Things like the Underage Festival in London, which is proving to be a big success and we think we’ll be exporting, requires more finance and we hope we’ll be backing that.”
Reid declined to comment on any territories the Underage Festival would be launched in.
The U.K. V Festival brand has been successfully exported to the U.S., Canada and Australia.
The Underage Festival grew out of the Underage Club brand, which has a Christmas event at London’s Scala on Dec. 20. Last year’s line-up for the festival, which books mainly alternative acts, included The Rascals, Operator Please, Foals, Glasvegas and Florence And The Machine.
Reid said that “music is still in demand” despite the difficult economic climate, adding that Ingenious is involved in a number of funding rounds at the moment for music-based investments.
“We’ve got various [funding rounds] both through our private equity fund and our venture capital trust, where we’ve concentrated in recent years particularly on the live market,” said Reid.
He stressed that evidence of multiple revenue streams is important for any music startup looking to attract investment from a VCT.
“If you’re thinking of starting up a pure record company, I think the advice would be don’t,” said Reid.
For more on how music startups are raising funds in the credit crunch, see the current issue of Billboard (Oct. 25).