Nederlander Organization Buys Live Nation's Share of Chicago Tour Market | Playbill

News Nederlander Organization Buys Live Nation's Share of Chicago Tour Market
As part of its continuing effort to shed its theatre holdings to concentrate on music, concerts and amphitheatre business, Live Nation has entered into an agreement to sell its interest in the booking operation Broadway in Chicago, as well as the Oriental Theatre there, to the Nederlander Organization.

According to Live Nation's 2007 third quarter report, the stake in the Chicago market will be sold for $60 million.

Live Nation (NYSE: LYV) is billed as the world's largest live music company. Its financial results for the period ending Sept. 30 were released Nov. 8.

Michael Rapino, president and chief executive officer of Live Nation stated Nov. 8, that "we entered into a definitive agreement to sell our 50 percent interest in Broadway in Chicago, a nonconsolidated investment, to certain entities wholly-owned by James L. Nederlander, who owns a controlling interest in our joint venture partner in Broadway in Chicago for a gross sales price of $60 million."

Broadway in Chicago primarily presents theatrical shows at four venues in Chicago, including the Ford Center for the Performing Arts - Oriental Theater which, he said, "we wholly own and will be sold as part of the transaction."

He added, "The transaction provides us with increased focus on our core music business. We will use the net proceeds to reinvest in our core business and/or repay debt. The transaction is expected to close before the end of the year." The Nederlander theatrical empire began with David T. Nederlander in Detroit in the early 20th century and spread internationally. The company produces plays and musicals, presents at venues it owns or operates around the U.S. and is owner of nine Broadway theatres.

(Members of the Nederlander family not affiliated with the organization recently launched a producing venture that will bring touring musical theatre to China and other cities in Asia. A run of 42nd Street, with American actors, was launched there earlier this fall.)

Nederlander Broadway theatre holdings include the famed Palace Theatre, the Gershwin, the Brooks Atkinson, the Lunt-Fontanne, the Marquis, the Minskoff, the Neil Simon, the Richard Rodgers and, of course, the Nederlander Theatre.

The organization's chairman is James M. Nederlander. The president is James L. Nederlander. Executive vice president is Nick Scandalios.

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