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ICM Partners acquires Just for Laughs comedy festival

The booking agency has snapped up the Canadian comedy brand as part of a group of investors that also includes comedian and TV host Howie Mandel

By IQ on 22 Mar 2018

Howie Mandel, Just for Laughs

Howie Mandel

image © Kovert Creative

Just for Laughs Group, the company behind Montreal’s Just for Laughs, the world’s largest international comedy festival, has been acquired by an investor group led by booking agency ICM Partners and its longtime client, Canadian comedian and actor Howie Mandel.

In addition to Just for Laughs Montreal, the company organises comedy tours, TV specialists and festivals around the world, including in Toronto, Vancouver and Sydney, and has subsidiaries in the US and France and production/distribution business in some 135 other countries.

“Just For Laughs has done a phenomenal job of producing the world’s most respected comedy festival for decades and have built that into a very successful global comedy business,” says Chris Silbermann, managing director of LA-based ICM Partners.

“We see a great opportunity to work with Just for Laughs to grow the global comedy brand”

“We see a great opportunity to work with them to grow the global comedy brand, in both French- and English-speaking comedy, while allowing the team on the ground in Montreal to continue to produce the festival as they have so successfully for all these years.”

ICM made two acquisitions last year, of broadcast news agency Headline Media Management in March and speakers business Royce Carlton in October. Its music roster includes Celine Dion, the Beach Boys, Barry Gibb, Anderson Paak, Dave Stewart, the Skins, Little Simz and Mike Will Made It.

The 36th Just For Laughs Festival will take place in Montreal from 14 to 28 July.


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