AEG Presents has purchased an interest in established independent Georgia promoter Zero Mile Presents, Billboard has learned. Zero Mile will retain ownership in the deal.
“It’s a true partnership,” president of AEG Presents North America Rick Mueller tells Billboard. “Honestly, I just really like working with Scott Orvold. It seemed like a natural fit to form the partnership.”
“As we started doing more stuff in this market we also recognized the need for a partner who could bring something to the table like AEG does,” Zero Mile co-founder Scott Orvold tells Billboard. “We were never planning to partner with [AEG]. I can honestly say we would have never done this if it didn’t feel really good. As we continued to get to know each other it made a lot of sense culturally the way we viewed business.”
Orvold and Alan Sher formed Zero Mile in 2016 to provide booking, marketing and operational services across their three venues the Variety Playhouse and Terminal West in Atlanta, as well as the historic Georgia Theatre in Athens. Marketing director Katie Carmody has also been with the business since its inception.
The partnership with Zero Mile expands AEG Presents’ presence throughout the Southeast and will consolidate the new entity with The Bowery Presents’ coverage in Atlanta and Birmingham and AEG Presents Carolinas to form a unified concert promotions company focusing on Georgia, Alabama and North and South Carolina. The unified company will work under the Zero Mile Presents banner.
“They successfully built a great business in Georgia in Atlanta and Athens,” adds Mueller. “Scott is a great promoter down there and we were looking for a more boots on the ground impact down there. It was a really good fit since they were trying to grow their business and for what we wanted to do in the marketplace.”
AEG and Zero Mile have also announced that they will break ground a new music venue in Georgia in the coming months called The Eastern.
“It is 2,200-capacity state of the art GA room. We’re going to build it from the ground up,” says Mueller.
“We have two other venues in Atlanta currently, Terminal West and Variety Playhouse. Terminal West is 650-cap and Variety playhouse is 1,100 so it is the next step for us in building artists in the Atlanta market,” adds Orvold.
The Eastern is set to be the anchor tenant of the Atlanta Dairies project located adjacent to the Atlanta Beltline which is a sustainable redevelopment project connecting 45 intown neighborhoods via a 22-mile loop of multi-use trails, modern streetcar and parks. The venue is also set to have a rooftop bar with the option of staging 100-200-capactiy shows.
Orvold says The Eastern is expected to open between spring and summer of 2020, with the venue in full swing by fall.