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Clair Global gets US’s biggest Main Street loan

The US-based concert behemoth, whose clients include Rolling Stones and Elton John, has borrowed $71m from the Main Street Lending scheme

By IQ on 14 Sep 2020

Clair Global serviced the top 10 highest-grossing tours of 2019, including The Rolling Stones tour

Clair Global serviced the top 10 highest-grossing tours of 2019, including The Rolling Stones tour


image © Wikimedia Commons/ Ralph_PH

Clair Global, a US-based company which provides amplification and tour support to the world’s biggest artists and music festivals, has borrowed US$71 million from the Main Street Lending scheme – the largest loan of its kind in the country, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer

The $600 billion taxpayer-backed programme was designed by the federal government to help sustain mid-sized businesses until they recover from the economic disruption caused by the pandemic.

Last year, Clair Global provided sound and support services to the Top 10 grossing tours, including Rolling Stones, Elton John, Ariana Grande and Pink.

Troy Clair, president and CEO of Clair Global, said in a statement that “the loan is proportional to the devastation the industry has felt over the last seven months,” but did not disclose how the $71 million will be deployed.

Funds from the Main Street program must be repaid but in the event of a default, it’s taxpayers’ money at risk

The Main Street Lending Program was devised as part of financial rescue legislation in the spring to help businesses that are too big to qualify for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), but too small to benefit from the Federal Reserve’s big purchases of corporate debt.

Unlike the PPP program’s forgivable loans, funds from the Main Street program must be repaid. Loan standards are also more selective, requiring participants to have been in good financial shape with manageable debt before the pandemic.

Banks write loans under the programme but are then able to hand 95% of that debt off to the Fed, so they have fewer assets at risk. In the event of a default, it’s mostly the taxpayers’ money, not the bank’s, that runs the risk of not being repaid.

Clair Global also got between $5 million and $10 million in a PPP loan, records show.

Last month, Clair Global acquired US-based company Eighth Day Sound, adding to its umbrella, which includes Britannia Row Productions in the UK, JPJ in Australia, and AudioRent Clair AG in Switzerland.

 


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