Entertainment One, aka eOne, has purchased live entertainment production company Round Room Entertainment for an undisclosed sum.
The acquisition will give eOne, which specializes in development, acquisition, production and distribution of entertainment content via film, television and music properties, a pathway into the live touring business.
The partnership developed after eOne and Round Room, run by co-presidents Stephen Shaw and Jonathan Linden, successfully collaborated on a PJ Masks Live tour, based on eOne’s pre-school property, PJ Masks, and produced by Round Room in 2017.
“I’ve known Jonathan and Steven for about 5 years,” says eOne’s Global President, Music, Chris Taylor. “The tour was a way for us to really get to know each other on a day-to-day working relationship. Having that under our belt was enough for me to bring them over all the way.”
Prior to Round Room, which launched in 2016, Shaw and Linden have worked on multiple tours, including the Rolling Stones and Barbra Streisand, as well as Broadway productions Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark and Rock of Ages through their tenures at Concert Productions International, Live Nation and S2BN Entertainment.
With New York-based Round Room on board, Taylor says eOne, whose network includes Amblin Partners with Steven Spielberg, DreamWorks Studios, Participant Media and Reliance Entertainment; as well as record label Dualtone Music Group and television production company Renegade 83, will now move into several more areas.
First is further development of family and kids-related properties. “Sometimes in the music business, we put blinders on and we want to be involved in the sexy part of the business or the classic part of dealing with a touring artist,” Taylor says, “but there’s a whole world out there to be involved in” with family shows.
eOne and Round Room will also move into artist exhibits, such as the recent Rolling Stones and David Bowie touring exhibits. Taylor expects to announce their first venture in that area within the next three months.
The acquisition will also allow eOne to delve into “classic artist touring and packaging,” Taylor says. “We do a lot in the adult urban stage, the metal stage. It’s not far fetched to think we could package and co-produce or co-promote tours.”
Lastly, Shaw and Linden will serve as a resource for the eight management companies under eOne’s umbrella. “John and Steve are going to be able to lend a hand as we move acts from 2,000 capacity to 5,000-7,000,” Taylor says.