Welcome to 2024's festival announcements

Issue #178 | November 14, 2023Some big acquisitions and festival announcements happened over the past week, and the Las Vegas Sphere continues to dominate news feeds - but this time it’s not all good news. Plus, who pays for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade?

Credit: Renan OzturkSpectacular Sphere lossThe spectacular Las Vegas Sphere announced a spectacular, $98.4 million Q1 loss for its fiscal 2024 year. CEO James Dolan said, “We are building positive momentum across Sphere and remain confident that we are well positioned to drive long-term value for shareholders” in the press release announcing earnings. The loss is slightly offset by its $7.8 million in revenue (up $7.1 million). Just 10 days prior to the announcement, CFO Gautam Ranji abruptly quit following Dolan’s “yelling and screaming.”

Vivid Seats takes over Vegas.comVivid Seats acquired Vegas.com for $240 million in cash and stock. The ticketing marketplace takeover of Las Vegas’s premier entertainment and attraction information hub boosts its addressable market by more than $6 billion. Vivid Seats made the announcement as part of their Q3 financial results where they also reported $188.1 million in revenue, up 20% from the same time in 2022.

Legends buys ASM GlobalLegends has officially announced its intentions to buy ASM Global, in a deal valued at over $2.4 billion. In the deal, Onex Partners (majority owners) AEG and Levy all sold their stakes in ASM Global. The deal includes Legends taking over all of ASM Global’s obligations, including management of all facilities and is expected to close by Q1 2024.  

Sports Sphere takeoverIn other positive Sphere news, the venue is being used for sports starting with the F1 race this Saturday. The race will take place around the Sphere, and Liberty Media, owners of F1, will own all of the Sphere’s advertising leading up to and during the race. Additionally, they will host a recovery brunch inside the venue on Sunday and have plans to expand on the partnership in future years. The first sporting event to take place inside the Sphere is also set, with the UFC planning to host an MMA fight there in September 2024.    

More antitrust allegations against Live NationLive Nation was hit with another antitrust lawsuit last week when shareholder Mark Zwick sued the company and members of its board of directors in federal court in California. The suit alleges that the company “concealed [its] anticompetitive misconduct in public filings and other disclosures before a Department of Justice investigation highlighted antitrust concerns. This is similar to a separate class action suit filed in August. 

New UK live advisory firmA new advisory firm called Spotlight Advisors has been created to help festivals and live entertainment businesses access business services focused on outsourcing, consultancy, and mergers and acquisitions in the UK. The firm was launched by UK-based leisure investor Edition Capital. “We cater to any stage of a business’s lifecycle, helping operators achieve their goals and maximize success in a very dynamic UK market,” said Spotlight’s Adam Spence.

Another lawsuit for Travis ScottTravis Scott was also hit with another lawsuit last week. The rapper has been sued by Ceremony of Roses, a company responsible for the amusements at Astroworld. They say Scott is guilty of "negligence and willful misconduct in connection with the Festival," which caused the company to "incur substantial financial harm."

Australian Bank warns of ticket scamsNational Australia Bank (NAB) wants ticket buyers to be on high-alert during the upcoming festival season and is cranking up its warnings and alerts in an effort to help identify ticketing scams before they happen. In 2023, the goods and services scam category, which ticketing scams fall into, cost Australians AU$36 million ($23 million USD). These increased efforts have led to approximately AU$220,000 abandoned payments per day.

New New York entertainment complexNY Mets owner Steve Cohen and Hard Rock International have released their plans to build Metropolitan Park, an $8 billion entertainment complex surrounding Citi Field in Queens, NY. The new complex, set to be built on 50 acres of parking lots around the field, will include a Hard Rock International live music venue, hotel, casino, a tailgate park, food hall, and 20 acres of new park space.

  EPS America is looking for a Project Manager to join its team providing services and infrastructure for live events. This hybrid role is based in the LA area with a salary of $60,000 - 70,000.       World of Good Brands is seeking a Director of Experiential to support all key aspects of experiential strategy and production at The House of Good, a multi-use experiential space in Venice, CA. Salary $165,000/yr - $175,000.     Goldenvoice is hiring a Production Manager for The Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, CA to advance all shows. Salary $70,037 - $106,117.

Have you been to Las Vegas this year?

Last Week's Results:

26% of BOH readers' event travel has been delayed 5+ times this past year.

Lineups, Festival & Tour Announcements

  • The Weeknd’s “After Hours Til Dawn” tour dates in Australia and New Zealand that were scheduled to start on November 20 have been postponed due to “unforeseen circumstances.”

  • Jackpot Festival will return to the Downtown Las Vegas Event Center on December 30 with Kaskade, ARMNHMR, Deorro, Good Times Ahead, Mashbit, Saymyname, and Yookie.

  • Arizona’s Innings Festival will feature Red Hot Chili Peppers and Hozier, February 23 - 24 at Tempe Beach Park & Arts Park in Tempe. And for the first time, the fest is expanding with its inaugural Extra Innings Festival, the following weekend, March 1 - 2 with Chris Stapleton and Dave Matthews Band. 

  • ILLfest has partnered with Disco Donnie Presents on its 2024 festival featuring REZZ and Black Tiger Sex Machine, March 9 - 10 at The Concourse Project Festival Grounds in Austin, TX. 

  • Lollapalooza announced dates and lineups for its Latin America festivals: March 15 -17 at Parque Bicentenario de Cerrillos in Santiago, Chile; March 15 - 17, at Hipodromo de San Isidro in Buenos Aires, Argentina; and March 22 - 24 at the Autodromo de Interlagos in São Paulo, Brazil. Headliners for the festival will include Blink-182, SZA, Sam Smith, Arcade Fire, and Limp Bizkit.

  • Jared Leto announced his band Thirty Seconds to Mars’ upcoming “Seasons 2024 World Tour” in monumental fashion by climbing the Empire State Building in NYC (Video). The tour kicks off with all 3 Latin American Lollapaloozas in March, then heads to Europe and North America, before wrapping up in the fall in Australia and New Zealand.

  • Kid Rock and Jason Aldean are taking on “7 Small Towns, 7 Massive Shows” with their multi-city Rock the Country Festival, starting April 5 - 6 in Gonzalez, LA. 

  • Eric Church, Whiskey Myers, and Koe Wetzel will headline the inaugural Cattle Country Music Festival in Gonzalez, TX, April 12 - 14. 

  • Welcome to Rockville announced Foo Fighters, Mötley Crüe, and Limp Bizkit as headliners for the May 9 - 12 festival at the Daytona International Speedway in Daytona Beach, FL.

  • Alanis Morissette is going out on tour next summer with Joan Jett and the Blackhearts and Morgan Wade. The “Triple Moon Tour” kicks off June 9 in Phoenix, AZ.

  • Queens Of The Stone Age, Avenged Sevenfold and Fall Out Boy will headline Download Festival, June 14 - 16 at Donington Park, Leicestershire, UK. Andy Copping, promoter for the festival, admitted that his team had a hard time booking next year’s festival, approaching 21 different headliners before locking in the lineup.

  • When We Were Young returns to the Las Vegas Festival Grounds on October 19 with headliners My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy leading the 50+ band lineup; each band is scheduled to perform a full album front-to-back during their set.

 How much does the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade cost and who pays for it?  The short shelf life of immersive attractions.  Event and group travel trends for 2024.

 10 Predictions for music's future. How 6 independent musicians make a living.  7 of the coolest cultural festivals in Europe.

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