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OVG secures ‘industry-first’ Co-op Live deal

OVG and CFG have closed and funded an innovative debt financing deal for the 23,500-cap Manchester venue, due to open in 2023

By James Hanley on 18 Feb 2022

Co-op Live, Manchester, UK

Co-op Live, Manchester, UK


Oak View Group (OVG) has secured an “industry-first” debt financing to fund the construction of east Manchester’s new Co-op Live arena.

The £365 million, 23,500-cap venue – a JV between OVG and Manchester-based City Football Group (CFG), will become the UK’s first all-electric arena when it opens in late 2023. Harry Styles has also signed up as an investor.

It has now been announced that OVG and CFG have closed and funded a 27-year senior secured note and five-year senior secured credit facility for the project. The private non-recourse financing is said to be a first for a music-focused live entertainment facility without a professional sports anchor tenant.

“It shows the confidence in our business model and ability to deliver on a robust, year-round calendar of unparalleled music and other content”

Long term financing is provided by Apollo and Barings, supplemented by a five-year bank loan from JP Morgan. The deal is secured by Co-op Live and the cash flow generated by the arena over 27 years. The balance of funding towards construction is provided by Co-op Live’s shareholders.

“We’re proud to have closed this pioneering financing to help fund the development of Co-op Live, which will deliver one of the world’s best arenas to Manchester,” says Francesca Bodie, OVG’s president of business development. “It shows the confidence in our business model and ability to deliver on a robust, year-round calendar of unparalleled music and other content.”

The OVG team currently has 11 arena projects under development globally, with Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle and UBS Arena in New York both opening last year.

 


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