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“Sleeping giant” Oates to lead Candypants expansion

Simon Oates, co-founder of iconic ’90s clubbing brand Gatecrasher, is the new director of group strategy for international party promoter Candypants

By IQ on 20 Jan 2020

Simon Oates, Candypants

Simon Oates


Candypants, a UK-born “global lifestyle party brand” which organised more than 400 shows in 2019, has appointed Gatecrasher co-founder Simon Oates as director of group strategy.

Candypants organises club nights and day parties in UK, Europe, North America and the Middle East. Alongside CEO Ray Chan, Oates is tasked with growing the Leeds-based company’s business over the next five years, following its best-ever 12 months in 2019.

Gatecrasher – the biggest clubbing brand in the world during its ’90s heyday – had nine superclubs across the UK and organised shows for tens of thousands of ravers, including huge new year’s eve events and major festivals in the UK and Australia.

Oates left Gatecrasher in 2006 and has since run bars and VIP areas for festivals including Download, Electric Picnic, Isle of Wight Festival, Reading Festival and Radio 1’s Big Weekend.

“He brings a great mix of leadership, inspiration, operational experience and very technical breadth”

“Simon is a sleeping giant in the industry with a widely regarded worldwide background and a track record of working with high-growth late night-sector companies,” comments Chan. “He also co-founded global phenomenon Gatecrasher in 1995, with 400 shows a year across 30 countries, including the US, Asia, Europe, South America, Russia, Japan and New Zealand…”

“He brings a great mix of leadership, inspiration, operational experience and very technical breadth, with a creative eye on brand development. He’s done it all.”

At Candypants, Oates will work to “develop Candypants as a multi-faceted event and entertainment brand, while maintaining it as the leading experiential daytime and late-night events company in the Middle East and across Europe, and continue to grow their global footprint and group,” according to a company statement.

He will also seek to drive business to other areas of the Candypants group, including fashion, music, marketing and video production, venue management, festivals, concierge and corporate hospitality.


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