Live Nation Entertainment has entered into an agreement to acquire a controlling interest in OCESA Entretenimiento, one of Latin America’s leading promoters of live events and owner of Ticketmaster Mexico. OCESA is owned by Grupo Televisa and Corporacion Interamericana de Entretenimiento (CIE), a major promoter and producers of concerts, festivals and sports and family events in Latin America.
The transaction, which is expected to finalize at the end of 2019 pending regulatory approvals, would have Live Nation acquiring a 51% stake in OCESA. This includes Televisa’s 40% stake and CIE’s 11% stake. In addition, Live Nation will acquire a 51% majority share in CIE’s convention center operation and private sector special events business.
Live Nation and OCESA have been partners in Mexico for years, both in Ticketmaster and in touring and festivals. But the acquisitions signals a deeper confidence in the Mexican marketplace and will no doubt also deepen ties here in the U.S.
Already, OCESA/CIE was the highest-grossing Latin promoter on the 2018 Billboard Year-End Boxscore charts and the fourth highest grossing promoter overall. On the 2019 mid-year charts, released just last week, it was the third highest grossing promoter, only behind Live Nation and AEG.
“We are extremely proud to join Live Nation,” said Alejandro Sobero?n Kuri, CIE president and CEO, in a press release. “This evolution of our long-standing relationship with Live Nation gives us a unique opportunity to continue OCESA’s 30-year contribution to the development of the Mexican live entertainment industry. In addition, this partnership will foster CIE’s commitment to the promotion of Mexican artistic talent abroad.”
“OCESA has been Live Nation’s touring, festival, and ticketing partner in Mexico for years, and I admire the business Alex has built,” added Live Nation president and CEO Michael Rapino. “This next step is a logical extension for both our teams, and we look forward to working on many more shows together.”
Soberón Kuri, who founded CIE, will be both CEO and board member of the new joint venture. He will also continue as CEO and Chairman of the Board of CIE. Rapino will become the chairman of the new venture’s board of directors.
Among the OCESA/Live Nation successes of the past year is Luis Miguel. The Mexican crooner is the highest-grossing Latin act of the past 12 months, according to Boxscore, with over $48 million from 57 shows.
LionTree Advisors is serving as financial advisor to Live Nation in connection with the transaction.