Oak View Group, Spectra to Merge in Blockbuster Venue Deal Oak View Group, Spectra to Merge in Blockbuster Venue Deal
Oak View Group and Spectra announced an agreement to merge on Monday, creating a venue management and hospitality giant will own, operate, or service... Oak View Group, Spectra to Merge in Blockbuster Venue Deal

Oak View Group and Spectra announced an agreement to merge on Monday, creating a venue management and hospitality giant will own, operate, or service hundreds of venues across the globe. Financial terms of the merger, which is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2021, were not announced.

“This merger brings together two dynamic leaders in the live events industry with complementary capabilities that will deliver a broad array of services to our clients,” says Tim Leiweke of Oak View Group. “OVG’s core competencies in arena development and corporate sponsorships, coupled with Spectra’s leadership in food and beverage services will create a full-service live events company that will deliver a compelling and highly competitive set of offerings that meet our clients’ evolving needs. I look forward to collaborating with the talented team at Spectra and bringing together our two organizations to create something truly unique.”

Oak View Group, formed in 2015 by former AEG CEO Tim Leiweke and former Live Nation Entertainment chairman Irving Azoff, also has ties through Azoff to Azoff MSG Entertainment, and a myriad of other facilities through its OVG Facilities division. It operates and books arenas, theaters, convention centers and amphitheaters. OVG is part-owned by Silver Lake Partners, which also owns peices of companies such as Endeavor, and Australia’s TEG. It recently signed a ticketing contract with Ticketmaster to cover six of its venues opening between now and 2023, including New York’s UBS Arena, Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena, Austin’s Moody Center, Coachella Valley Arena in California, Savannah Arena and Co-Op Live in Manchester, England.

Spectra is a venue management and hospitality giant, which counts among its clients hundreds of venues, casinos, and convention centers. Among its clients are Cotton Bowl Stadium in Dallas, SeatGeek stadium, in Bridgeview, Illinois, XL Center in Hartford, Connecticut, and State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. According to a report by VenuesNow (which is owned by OVG), Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia is not included in the deal, and will be managed by Comcast separately from Spectra.

“This is an exciting development for Spectra and an important step in our journey to provide unparalleled services to our clients along with exciting growth opportunities for our team members as part of a larger, more diverse organization,” says Dave Scott, CEO of Spectra. “This merger accelerates our existing strategy and will lead to significant opportunities to cross-sell food, beverage and sponsorship services across our combined client base. I look forward to working with Tim, Irving and the OVG team to enhance the future of live events for our valued clients.”

The full press release announcing the merger is included below:

Oak View Group and Spectra to Merge, Creating a Leading Full-Service Live Events Company

LOS ANGELES and PHILADELPHIAAug. 30, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Oak View Group (“OVG”), a global venue development, advisory, and investment company for the sports and live entertainment industries, and Spectra, one of the industry’s leading venue management and hospitality providers, today announced a definitive agreement under which OVG and Spectra will merge to create a leader in the live events industry. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Tim Leiweke, CEO of OVG, commented, “This merger brings together two dynamic leaders in the live events industry with complementary capabilities that will deliver a broad array of services to our clients. OVG’s core competencies in arena development and corporate sponsorships, coupled with Spectra’s leadership in food and beverage services will create a full-service live events company that will deliver a compelling and highly competitive set of offerings that meet our clients’ evolving needs. I look forward to collaborating with the talented team at Spectra and bringing together our two organizations to create something truly unique.”

Dave Scott, CEO of Spectra, said, “This is an exciting development for Spectra and an important step in our journey to provide unparalleled services to our clients along with exciting growth opportunities for our team members as part of a larger, more diverse organization. This merger accelerates our existing strategy and will lead to significant opportunities to cross-sell food, beverage and sponsorship services across our combined client base. I look forward to working with Tim, Irving and the OVG team to enhance the future of live events for our valued clients.”

Founded in 2015 by industry veterans Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff, OVG specializes in real estate venue development and financing, sponsorship sales and partnership management, media and content and facilities management and security. OVG has deep partnerships with prominent venues, including major league facilities such as Climate Pledge Arena (Seattle) and UBS Arena (Belmont, NY), among others.

Spectra has positioned itself as an industry leader by helping clients maximize venue budgets and operations, optimize sales and marketing, elevate relationships with top promoters and meeting planners, connect with fans and the community, and implement industry best practices to effectively and efficiently host extraordinary live events and entertainment.

The combined company will provide industry-leading expertise in booking and creating content for the venues it manages, and it will be committed to sustainability across its business operations by harnessing the power of the entertainment and sports industries to inspire positive change robustly and at scale.

Completion of the combination, which is expected in the fourth quarter of this year, is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Following the close of the transaction, OVG will remain headquartered in Los Angeles, with the headquarters for Spectra remaining in Philadelphia.

UBS Investment Bank acted as financial advisor and Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor to Oak View Group. Moelis & Company LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP acted as legal advisor to Spectra.

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