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TEG MJR and Snoop Dogg sign exclusive touring deal

TEG MJR, the UK-based promotion division of Asia-Pacific live powerhouse TEG, has secured an exclusive five-year deal with hip-hop heavyweight, Snoop Dogg.

Under the multi-million-dollar deal, TEG MJR will promote all of Snoop Dogg’s tours globally outside of North America, beginning with dates for Snoop’s 2022 world tour.

The European leg of the tour kicks off on 20 February 2022 and includes rescheduled sold-out shows at London’s 02 Arena (cap. 21,000), Dublin’s 3 Arena (cap. 13,000) and Amsterdam’s Ziggo Dome Arena (cap. 17,000).

TEG MJR CEO Richard Buck penned the agreement with Snoop’s international agents Julian O’Brien and MPI’s Minneapolis-based partner Nabil Ghebre, who have been working closely together with Bobby D (Aaka Robert Dreislen), who is at the helm of Snoop Dogg’s operations in Los Angeles.

Geoff Jones, CEO of TEG, says: “Snoop Dogg is a hip hop pioneer and one of its greatest live performers. He has won an astonishing number of awards and nominations and we are thrilled to be able to bring the man and his music live to fans the world over for the next five years.”

“We are really excited in helping him bring both his new music and back catalogue to life with this touring partnership”

Richard Buck, CEO of TEG MJR, says: “Snoop is one of the most respected and prolific hip hop artists on the planet. We are really excited in helping him bring both his new music and back catalogue to life with this touring partnership.”

Bobby D, Snoop Dogg’s manager and co-owner of Uncle Snoop’s Army, says: “We are excited about this five-year international partnership with TEG and to continuously come overseas to connect with our fans around the world.”

Uncle Snoop’s Army is a multi-million-dollar LA-based music and entertainment company representing hip-hop artists.

The first dates on Snoop Dogg’s world tour (including rescheduled dates for the UK, Ireland and Amsterdam) are:

20 Feb 2022 – Telenor Arena, Oslo, NO
21 Feb 2022 – Bella Center Kongreshal, Copenhagen, DK
23 Feb 2022 – Koepi Arena , Oberhausen, DE
24 Feb 2022 – Sportpaleis Arena , Antwerp, NL
25 Feb 2022 – Max Schmeling Halle , Berlin, DE
27 Feb 2022 – Accor Arena, Paris, FR
28 Feb 2022 – Ziggo Dome Arena, Amsterdam NL
02 Mar 2022 – SSE Hydro Arena, Glasgow UK
03 Mar 2022 – Resorts World Arena, Birmingham UK
05 Mar 2022 – AO Arena, Manchester UK
07 Mar 2022 – First Direct Arena, Leeds UK
08 Mar 2022 – 02 Arena, London UK
09 Mar 2022 – 3 Arena, Dublin IE
11 Mar 2022 – INEC Arena, Kerry IE
12 Mar 2022 – SSE Arena, Belfast UK

 


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Greatest Southern Nights an “incredibly powerful statement”

On 28 November and 5 December, Sydney’s Qudos Bank Arena will welcome thousands of fans for The Greatest Southern Nights, the first indoor arena shows in Australia since the coronavirus pandemic hit in March.

Here, Geoff Jones, CEO of co-promoter TEG, explains how the concerts came together, how fans will be kept safe, how it feels to co-promote shows with rival Live Nation, and why these “circuit-breaker” concerts aren’t about the money…


 

Q: These two concerts will be the first big indoor arena shows in Australia, and there has only been a handful of arena shows globally since Covid-19 struck. What was the genesis of these shows?
GJ: When Covid-19 shut down the live industry globally, we convened the Live Entertainment Industry Forum (LEIF) in Australia and spent several months working together to devise a set of very helpful guidelines to assist the return of live entertainment in a structured and methodical way. While these guidelines were developed for the entire live industry, increasingly we saw that major live sporting events and codes were getting the lion’s share of focus and support from governments, which is somewhat understandable given they mobilised so quickly to protect seasons in mid-flight or international broadcast rights. It seemed to me that the live music sector was at risk of being left behind and I wanted to do something about it.

So, in late April, I called my colleague, Tim McGregor, the managing director of TEG Live, and asked him to work on a plan to restart concerts based on the developing COVID Safe requirements of Australia’s public health authorities and the safety guidelines created by LEIF in consultation with those authorities. Initially, we explored (and continue to explore) a number of outdoor concert options as there was a lot of commentary and advice that events in these settings were likely to return sooner. But the LEIF experience made it very clear to me that the live music industry really needs its indoor venues to return to full mode capacity as soon as practicable in order to be financially viable.

TEG owns the biggest indoor arena in Australia, Qudos Bank Arena, and Tim and I thought it would be an incredibly powerful statement to somehow deliver some large-scale concerts in that venue before the end of the year. But we wanted to do it in a collegiate way with the industry, so I reached out to Live Nation Asia Pacific president, Roger Field, and invited them to join us in this venture. And so it all began to take shape.

“In the current pandemic context, and with all the work done together with LEIF, a collaboration with Live Nation just made sense”

I understand you all worked together on the Live Entertainment Industry Forum guidelines but did you actually expect to co-promote shows together with Live Nation?
In the current pandemic context and with all the work done together with LEIF, a collaboration just made sense to put the LEIF guidelines into practice and collectively shine a light on live music by working together to produce The Greatest Southern Nights. We’re supporting the artists, the production suppliers and crew, the event staff and many others, including, most importantly, the music fans who have been deprived of arena concerts since March. It’s the sort of industry leadership that we are proud to be a part of.

The New South Wales Government has shown strong support for the live music industry through its Great Southern Nights programme with the Australia Record Industry Association (ARIA). So presumably they were keen on the idea?
The New South Wales government, in particular minister for jobs, investment and tourism Stuart Ayres and Destination New South Wales CEO Steve Cox, and ARIA have shown incredible leadership and support for live music and, indeed, when I presented this concept to them, it was warmly received and we got to work immediately. I really have to applaud all three bodies and hope other governments roll out similar support to get live music moving in their markets.

How do the two “Greatest” Southern Nights arena concerts connect with the 1,000 smaller concerts being run under the “Great” Southern Nights moniker?
The 1,000 gigs for the Great Southern Nights is a superb concept, delivering shows of all shapes and sizes across New South Wales. It will hopefully create a lot of momentum for the industry and joy for fans as they get to see some of their favourite domestic artists in some intimate settings, in a Covid-safe format. So we just thought The Greatest Southern Nights was an excellent complement to the programme, but, of course, upscaled to the biggest capacity indoor arena in the country – Qudos Bank Arena – again with Covid-safe measures in place.

What are the Covid-safe measures that will be in place at The Greatest Southern Nights?
The safety of fans, artists and staff is always our top priority and we will work closely with and comply with the evolving requirements of the public health authorities in respect of the Greatest Southern Nights events. First and foremost, Qudos Bank Arena is a 21,000-capacity venue but will be capped at a fully seated capacity of around 6,200 for these concerts. This will allow for effective implementation of social distancing measures across all parts of the venue, including by way of chequerboard seating in the auditorium. There will also be an extensive cleaning regime and hygiene measures, a fully cashless operation and Ticketek’s fully mobile ticketing platform will assist with efficient ingress and contact tracing if necessary. Again, we will work closely with the public health authorities to implement these and other arrangements deemed necessary at the time to operate on a Covid-safe basis.

“These concerts are not designed to show how live music can recommence on a financially sustainable basis”

You have locked in some great acts for these concerts…
Yes, we had really overwhelming interest from artists wishing to be a part of these historic shows. We’re thrilled that Ocean Alley, Jack River, Ruby Fields and Jack Botts will play at the 28 November show and we have Bernard Fanning, Matt Corby and Merci, Mercy at the 5 December show. We’re so rapt with these two huge consecutive Saturday nights of live music to close out what has been a very, very tough year for our industry and we want them to provide some hope for a much better year in 2021.

Does this mean we will see more shows at Qudos Bank Arena in this reduced-capacity format?
Possibly – but, I can assure you, these concerts do not make a lot of financial sense and that’s not why we are doing it. Firstly, we will be operating with a reduced capacity, which obviously means lower ticket sales. At the same time, we need to use the entire venue, which entails a full deployment of ushers, security and other staff, in addition to all the Covid-safe measures I have mentioned. All of those things cost money. So we have reduced revenue and greater expenses to operate these shows.

Without the generous support from the New South Wales government and without Qudos Bank Arena being provided on a rent-free basis, these concerts would make even less financial sense (although we are going to explore this very carefully to see what might be feasible as we have some solid ideas).

The bottom line is that these concerts are not designed to show how live music can recommence on a financially sustainable basis. They are intended to act as a circuit-breaker to interrupt the near-paralysis that the large concerts industry has been experiencing since Covid arrived; to demonstrate how large indoor concerts can be operated safely and professionally in a Covid world.

Our hope is that The Greatest Southern Nights will generate some important momentum to help lift live music up onto the pedestal alongside sport, where it absolutely should be.

 


This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.

Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ IndexIQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Australia to host first arena concerts since March

TEG, Live Nation and the government of New South Wales (NSW) have announced plans for The Greatest Southern Nights, Australia’s first arena shows since the shutdown of the concert business in March.

Taking place as part of Great Summer Nights, the state-backed 1,000-show concert series running in NSW throughout this month, the Greatest Southern Nights shows will play to more than 12,000 fans at Qudos Bank Arena (21,000-cap.) over two nights in a seated, ‘Covid-safe’ setting.

Ocean Alley will headline the first gig, on Saturday 28 November, joined by Jack River, Ruby Fields and Jack Botts, with Bernard Fanning and Matt Corby, supported by Merci, Mercy, playing the second on Saturday 5 December. For each, co-promoters TEG Live and Live Nation will welcome more than 6,000 fans to the Sydney venue.

Geoff Jones, CEO of TEG and a key figure in the pan-industry Live Entertainment Industry Fund (LEIF), comments: “These shows are vital for our industry because they will show that we can stage big live concerts safely and that Australians cannot wait to get out and share great live entertainment experiences with their friends and family.

“We have seen the successful and safe return of large crowds to major live sport, and it is time for live music to make a return at scale at a world-class venue, Qudos Bank Arena, which we will operate in a reduced, Covid-safe capacity for these shows.”

Tickets for the Ocean Alley show cost A$91.60 (€56), while the Bernard Fanning-Matt Corby date is priced at $99.90 (€60). The shows go on sale at 10am local time Monday and Tuesday, respectively, via TEG’s Ticketek platform.

“After eight long months of zero arena shows, these concerts will see great musicians bring thousands of fans back together”

“After eight long months of zero arena shows, these concerts will see great musicians bring thousands of fans back together,” comments Roger Field, president of Live Nation Asia Pacific, who also serves on the LEIF executive committee. “Not only will these two wonderful nights of entertainment deliver significant employment but they are sure to inject a vital economic boost to our industry and the economy.”

The shows are supported by New South Wales’s tourism agency, Destination NSW. The state’s minister for jobs, investment, tourism and Western Sydney, Stuart Ayres, says: “NSW has led Australia in reigniting the live music industry through Great Southern Nights, and now we are excited to announce these landmark concerts that will be the hottest tickets in the country.

“The NSW government is proud to be getting artists, roadies, venues, hospitality staff and tourism businesses back to work and we hope this heralds the safe return of major indoor arena events.”

Arena shows have already returned to neighbouring New Zealand, where Live Nation recently promoted a headline tour by local star Benee. At press time, Australia had just 12 new cases of coronavirus today (6 November), while NZ had one.

“I’m so happy to be part of the reopening of the live music scene in NSW,” adds Bernard Fanning. “It’s a great opportunity to get people safely together again, but just as importantly to give the music industry workers whose lives have been so upended by Covid a chance to get back to doing what they do best.”

 


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Australia’s LEIF releases Covid-safe guidelines

The Live Entertainment Industry Forum (LEIF), which represents Australia’s largest live entertainment and sport businesses, has released a new set of ‘Covid-safe’ guidelines for the safe restart of live events.

The new recommendations by LEIF – formed in June this year by Australia’s biggest concert and sports promoters, venue managers and industry associations – have been drawn up by industry experts from more over 50 organisations, in consultation with government and health agencies.

They include measures on cleaning and sanitisation, crowd management, physical distancing plans, health monitoring and contact tracing.

LEIF chair James Sutherland comments: “LEIF is committed to ensuring the passionate people of the industry have the safest, staged and most considered route back to full employment, which in turn, will deliver significant positive economic outcomes for the community through events, which are integral features of healthy and connected communities.

“These guidelines have been developed by LEIF to provide guidance, support and a point of reference”

“These guidelines have been developed by LEIF to provide guidance, support and a point of reference to live entertainment venues, event promoters and service providers to reactivate live events in a Covid-safe way.”

The guidelines, which can be found on the LEIF website, have been released in advance of the Event Summit, which takes place in Sydney on 14 October. At the conference, Sutherland and LEIF members Geoff Jones (CEO of TEG) and Roger Field (president of Live Nation Asia-Paicifc) will present a study assessing the economic contribution of the live entertainment industry in Australia, developed in cooperation with Ernst & Young.

The launch of the LEIF guidelines follows the release in August of a similar set of ‘Covid-safe’ measures developed by trade body Live Performance Australia.

At press time, some live events (particularly sports) had restarted in Australia, albeit with social distancing and with different restrictions by state.

 


This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.

Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ IndexIQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

Australian biz unites for safe reopening strategy

The Live Entertainment Industry Forum (LEIF), a new initiative that aims to to ensure fans can return safely to live events when restrictions on mass gatherings are lifted, has been formed by Australia’s biggest live entertainment companies.

LEIF’s mission is to “support the COVIDSafe reactivation of events with live audiences across Australia” when restrictions are eased in July, according to the body. (COVIDSafe is Australia’s coronavirus contact-tracing app.) “LEIF will put in place a comprehensive, flexible, all-of-industry reopening and risk-management strategy that meets the needs of the public, governments, sporting bodies, venues, performers and industry, with safety at its core.”



LEIF comprises all major Australian live businesses, including promoters Live Nation, TEG, Frontier Touring, Chugg Entertainment and AEG; agency WME; venues Melbourne Cricket Ground, Sydney Cricket Ground, Marvel Stadium, Melbourne Olympic Parks and Adelaide Oval; venue operators ASM Global, Venues West and Venues Live; musical producer Michael Cassel Group; and associations Live Performance Australia, Venue Management Association and Australian Festivals Association.

Led by an executive committee headed by former Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland, the forum says will work in conjunction with governments, sporting bodies, venues and audiences to “build confidence in the industry’s preparedness to operate safely, flexibly and sustainably and explore how industry can be supported by governments during its gradual return”.

“I am proud that we stand united to work together”

LEIF will develop measures regarding cleaning and sanitisation, crowd management, physical distancing plans, health monitoring and contact tracing, with the objective of restarting an industry responsible for more than 175,000 Australian jobs. The objective is to safely restart an industry which supports over 175,000 Australian jobs and feeds other sectors hit hard by COVID-19 such as tourism, transport and hospitality.

“This pandemic has brought our industry to a complete standstill. The thousands of cancelled sporting events, concerts, festivals, theatre, family and comedy shows, and all the associated revenues related to them, can never be replaced,” comments Sutherland.

“Our industry was the first to close during Covid-19 and it will be one of the last to fully reopen. The cultural, creative and sports industries supports the livelihoods of around 175,000 Australians, many of whom are casual or part time. The industry also contributes an estimated $150 billion to the Australian economy. Our live events have a huge economic flow on effect: we support jobs in airlines and other transport companies, hotels, pubs, restaurants and retail establishments of all sizes all over Australia.

“We need a clear roadmap to get our industry back to work, while playing a bigger role in the post-Covid-19 economic recovery of our nation. We are committed to working with all states and territories, especially with their chief medical and health officers. We will develop COVIDSafe best practices and a world-leading response to revive our industry, get people back to work and bring fans back together throughout Australia through the unbeatable power of live events.”

“We must put aside our natural competitive instincts so we can all bring large-scale live events back to the Australian people”

“Our industry has to work together at this challenging time. We must put aside our natural competitive instincts so we can all bring large-scale live events back to the Australian people safely,” says Geoff Jones, CEO of TEG. “We want to work closely with the federal, state and territory governments to create solutions that get our industry up and running again and help get the many thousands of people who support our industry back to work. We want to bring fans back and jobs back, safely.”

Roger Field, CEO of Live Nation Australasia – who also serves on the executive committee alongside Sutherland and Jones – adds: “Live events and mass gatherings are not solely for recreational purposes – they play a crucial part in the fabric of Australian life.

“Just as sport plays an important role in promoting healthy behaviours, so too do music and the performing arts. The positive impact culture brings to society is not only seen both psychologically and in social wellbeing, but in the fact that the live events industry contributes hundreds of thousands of jobs, which flows on and effects the whole economy.

“I am proud that we stand united to work together to make the return to events a reality and for the people of Australia to enjoy the power of live once again.”

 


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Australian promoter the Van Egmond Group joins TEG

Australian promoter the Van Egmond Group has joined live entertainment giant TEG, adding to the company’s live music arms TEG Live, TEG Dainty and TEG MJR.

Led by Garry and Christo Van Egmond, the Melbourne-based company has over 45 years’ experience in event promotion, merchandising and ticketing and has promoted tours including Dire Straits’ Brothers in Arms and AC/DC’s Black Ice.

Under the deal, the group will be renamed TEG Van Egmond. Financial terms have not been disclosed.

“The Van Egmond Group has a long pedigree of delivering blockbuster tours with huge acts such as Dire Straits, Billy Joel, Rod Stewart, INXS, Riverdance, Prince, Bette Midler, Dolly Parton and the great AC/DC,” says TEG CEO Geoff Jones.

“Garry has sold well in excess of 30 million tickets across contemporary concerts and theatre productions in the Australasian marketplace and we are delighted to have him and Christo on board as part of the TEG family.”

“We have seen TEG’s phenomenal growth over the last few years and we look forward to delivering some big tours and events under TEG Van Egmond”

Garry Van Egmond adds: “We have seen TEG’s phenomenal growth over the last few years under Geoff’s leadership and we are very excited about joining TEG and look forward to delivering some big tours and events under TEG Van Egmond.

“TEG Van Egmond will be active in both the North America and UK/Europe for top-tier touring opportunities for Australia and South East Asia.”

Cindy Wilson, previously managing director of BASE Entertainment Asia, will represent TEG Van Egmond in North America, based in Los Angeles.

TEG, which was bought by private equity firm Silver Lake Partners in October 2019, last year expanded into Europe through its acquisition of the MJR Group, now TEG MJR, and launched a new family entertainment arm, TEG Experiences. The company also issues over 28 million tickets a year through its ticketing platform Ticketek.

Along with TEG Live and TEG Dainty, the company organised the Fire Fight Australia bushfire benefit concert earlier this month.

 


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TEG raises over AU$9.5m for bushfire relief

Sunday’s Fire Fight Australia charity concert has raised almost AU$10 million (US$6.7m) for bushfire relief, with promoters TEG Dainty and TEG Live expecting more donations to come.

The mammoth nine-and-a-half-hour benefit concert took place at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium on 16 February, with an audience of 75,000 watching performances from Queen and Adam Lambert, Alice Cooper, Michael Bublé, 5 Seconds of Summer and Peking Duk, among others.

The concert was broadcast live across Australia, thanks to a partnership between TEG and television networks Foxtel and Seven Network. Highlights of the show will be broadcast worldwide in the coming days with a call to action to donate.

The AU$9.5 m ($6.4m) raised so far will go to rural and regional fire services, Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery, RSPCA Bushfire Appeal and the BizRebuild programme.

“What a day and what a night it has been,” comments TEG CEO Geoff Jones. “Our huge thanks are owed to the 23 artists and bands and to the many companies and people who donated their time and services to make Fire Fight Australia happen.

“It has been an enormous effort from the music industry to pull this concert together in five weeks and we are just so proud of what has been achieved through our collective effort.”

“It has been an enormous effort from the music industry to pull this concert together in five weeks”

“We are overjoyed at the response from all of the fans here tonight at ANZ Stadium in Sydney and around the world,” adds TEG Dainty CEO Paul Dainty. “From the first conversation with Queen’s manager, Jim Beach, the band’s immediate response to support this amazing event was what set everything in motion.

“We want to give a special shout out to Celeste Barber for hosting this historic event, she has been one of the greatest supporters and we thank her.

“People can continue to donate and purchase the official Fire Fight Australia T-Shirt online with 100% of proceeds going to the fundraising efforts.”

A full breakdown of the final amounts raised will be made available in due course. TEG intends to keep donations open until mid May, when international broadcasts end. Accounting firm Deloitte will provide a post-event report detailing revenues, expenses and confirmation of the final donations to the various charities.

Jones, Dainty and TEG Live CEO Tim McGregor wrote in IQ ahead of Fire Fight Australia this weekend, describing how the star-studded event came to be. Read TEG’s journey to Fire Fight Australia here.

Fire Fight Australia: The journey so far


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Fire Fight Australia: The journey so far

Geoff Jones, Paul Dainty and Tim McGregor write for IQ in advance of TEG’s mammoth Fire Fight Australia benefit concert this weekend.

This Sunday the Australian music industry will come together to present its response to the worst bushfire season in living memory – and it promises to be something pretty special.

FIRE FIGHT AUSTRALIA is a nine-and-a-half-hour benefit stadium concert in Sydney featuring a cavalcade of leading international and local acts performing in in front of 75,000 fans, with millions more watching on TV across Australia, New Zealand, the US and the UK.

We hope to raise many millions to aid rural and regional Australia’s short, medium and long-term recovery through the generosity of fans who have bought tickets, merchandise, food and drink and have donated through firefightaustralia.com.

The concert has come together in five short weeks thanks to the creativity and collaborative spirit of our industry’s people. This is the story of how we did it but first, a bit about why.

We are sure you have read about the recent devastation Down Under, caused by sustained drought and intense heat that sparked terrifying wildfires.

Dozens of lives have been lost, thousands of homes and businesses destroyed, thousands of people evacuated, countless animals killed and more than 46 million acres of Australia’s bushland razed. Sydney and Melbourne dwellers had daily reminders of our fellow Aussies’ plight just miles away, in the form of choking smog.

Many of TEG’s staff and their families and friends were affected personally by the bushfires and, like so many others, we were keen to do our bit. In late November, with the bushfire season still in its early throes, we spied the opportunity.

The concert has come together in five short weeks thanks to the creativity and collaborative spirit of our industry’s people

Geoff and Paul had spoken about the idea of a Live Aid-style bushfire benefit. It would feature the very same band who had stolen the show at Wembley in 1985, a little group from England called Queen (now Queen + Adam Lambert).

On Saturday 15th February, Queen + Adam Lambert would be playing ANZ Stadium in Sydney’s Olympic Park as part of their global Rhapsody Tour, promoted by TEG Dainty. They were back to the top of their game and big as ever in the wake of the hit movie Bohemian Rhapsody.

On paper, it seemed we had the infrastructure, the iconic act, and the opportunity – in tragic circumstances – to create something special that could galvanise many other acts to join the bill and make a difference.

Paul made a call to the band’s manager Jim Beach and, to our immense gratitude, they were supportive from the word go. The same was true of Michael Bublé and Alice Cooper, who were also due to be in Australia with TEG Dainty and TEG Live respectively at that time.

It was an ambitious deadline and it would be a massive challenge to add to our non-stop day jobs. But at our final meeting before the holidays TEG’s senior leadership team roared in approval. By Christmas Eve we had snapped up the firefightaustralia.com domain name.

First thing Sunday morning on 5 January, Geoff, Paul and TEG Live managing director Tim McGregor hit the phones to start filling out the bill. The response from the acts and the labels was incredible.

ANZ Stadium made a generous offer to provide us the venue for free the day after Queen + Adam Lambert’s full concert. Our own venue, the Qudos Bank Arena next door could operate as a production staging point and host artist dressing rooms.

We had the infrastructure, the iconic act, and the opportunity – in tragic circumstances – to create something special

On Monday 6 January we appointed a project leader – the highly capable Jared Wright – and together we put together a project leadership team of 13 including executives and staff from TEG Dainty, TEG Live, TEG Corporate and Ticketek, with a total team of more than 25 working around the clock on top of their day jobs.

With the idea now becoming a reality, we felt confident enough to send out a “save the date” media release on Tuesday 7 January and start doing radio, TV and press.

Our message was simple: we wanted to raise as much money as possible towards bushfire relief to help those affected – and to raise spirits in the process through the unifying power of live music. Our ethos: to be inclusive and to communicate clearly with all stakeholder groups.

By the Friday, we had secured most of the 23 wonderful acts that would perform (you can read the full line-up here) and – in another coup – our host, the writer, actor and comedian Celeste Barber, whose record-breaking online appeal had just raised more than AU$50 million (US$34m) towards bushfire relief and won global acclaim.

To determine FIRE FIGHT AUSTRALIA’s recipient organisations and charities we undertook extensive due diligence. All concert ticket profits would go to rural and regional fire services in affected states, the Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund and the RSPCA Bushfire Appeal, with the BizRebuild program added later.

At 1pm on 13 January, we went on sale. Tickets were priced at top price of $100. By close of business, we had all but sold out. We were stunned by the fans’ generosity and desire to be involved.

We were inundated with offers from global and local media companies to televise and stream the event. That created an opportunity for a live telecast to raise more money and to allow music fans everywhere to see the concert.

Our message was simple: we wanted to raise as much money as possible towards bushfire relief – and to raise spirits in the process through the unifying power of live music

We settled on one of the leading local free to air television networks, Seven, and the leading subscription television service Foxtel, which also set up global distribution. All donations made through the broadcasts would go to the Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal’s Fire Fight Fund.

And that’s when the real hard work began…

As anyone who works in live entertainment will know, we have spared you a million details about what it has really taken to make FIRE FIGHT AUSTRALIA happen – and we want to acknowledge Jared Wright and the TEG FIRE FIGHT Team for the long nights and weekends it has taken, and the challenges ahead to deliver the show on the day.

TEG’s thanks are owed to so many who moved so fast to make the event possible, including (deep breath): the 23 artists and bands who gave it their all; the 1,400 workers on the day, including production crew, stagehands, riggers, audio, lighting, video and backline personnel, stage managers, volunteers; the suppliers and drivers of 35 trucks; the providers of numerous hotel rooms and suites; and the 23 media and marketing companies, 22 production companies, eight catering and food and beverage companies and seven car companies that donated staff, products and services.

Shout outs too to NSW Transport for waiving public transport costs for ticket holders, to Cotton On for creating and supplying FIRE FIGHT AUSTRALIA T-Shirts, to Fetch TV for buying tickets for 1000 rural fire fighters to attend the event, to Gildan Brands for supplying those firies with specially designed FIRE FIGHT T-shirts, to those we were not able to accommodate and all those we have not had space to mention.

Just like the generosity and resourcefulness of the live music and entertainment industry, the list goes on and on.

Now, on with the show!

 


Geoff Jones is CEO of TEG, Paul Dainty is CEO of TEG Dainty and Tim McGregor is CEO of TEG Live

 

Silver Lake eyes up potential TEG buy

US private-equity firm Silver Lake Partners is in talks to buy Australian live entertainment powerhouse TEG, according to a report by the Australian Financial Review.

Reports suggest that the California-based buyout specialist is in “late-stage talks” with TEG’s owner Affinity Equity and senior management team, led by CEO Geoff Jones, in a deal expected to surpass AUS$1 billion (US$675 million).

Silver Lake has over $43 billion in combined assets across a portfolio of tech-related businesses such as Alibaba, AMC, Dell Technologie and Tesla. The firm also has stakes in various live entertainment-related enterprises, including in WME parent company Endeavor, the Madison Square Garden Company, UFC and Oak View Group (OVG).

The firm is the not the first potential buyer to register interest in TEG over the past few years. In 2016, CTS Eventim and Chinese conglomerates Fosun and Wanda Group made up a trio of potential buyers in the running to acquire TEG.

Silver Lake has stakes in various live entertainment-related enterprises

TEG, the parent company of one of Australia’s “big two” ticketing companies, Ticketek, made moves into the European market earlier this year, acquiring UK-based promoter the MJR Group.

The company also owns self-service ticketing platform Eventopia, promotion business TEG Live, concert promoter TEG Dainty – formerly Dainty Group –, data firm TEG Analytics and the AEG-Ogden-operated the Qudos Bank Arena (21,000-cap.) in Sydney.

TEG launched a new live family entertainment division, TEG Experiences, earlier this month.

IQ has contacted TEG for comment.

 


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TEG launches live family entertainment arm

Australasian live entertainment powerhouse TEG has announced the creation of a new content division, TEG Experiences, bringing together its family entertainment, experiential and exhibitions businesses.

The division, a “new force in live family entertainment”, is part of TEG’s global growth strategy, following its recent acquisition of UK-based promoter and venue operator MJR Group.

Dustin Lockett will lead TEG Experiences as managing director. Lockett brings two decades of live entertainment experience to the role, previously serving as commercial director of BBC Studios ANZ and director of Seven West Media’s Red Live Events and Touring.

TEG chief executive Geoff Jones, who has worked with Lockett “several times before”, says he is the “perfect fit” to run TEG Experiences. Lockett will be based in Sydney and starts on 16 October.

Jones, who will produce the family content in partnership with global brands across Asia-Pacific, Europe and North America, comments: “TEG is Asia Pacific’s leading ticketing, live entertainment and technology business and now we are focused on becoming a global live entertainment business.

“TEG is Asia Pacific’s leading ticketing, live entertainment and technology business and now we are focused on becoming a global live entertainment business”

“The formation of TEG Experiences marks the next phase in that strategy. TEG is Australasia’s leader in live family entertainment and of the top three businesses of its kind globally in the fields of theatrical and experiential events. Now is the time for us to build on that position and pool our branded family entertainment assets.”

In addition to producing an array of new and alternative content, TEG Experiences will incorporate existing TEG divisions: live family entertainment show producer Life Like Touring, activation zone supplier the Entertainment Store and Lego-based installation creator Brickman Exhibitions.

Anton Berezin and Theresa Borg, who founded Life Like Touring and the Entertainment Store 20 years ago, are departing their roles as managing director and creative director of the divisions.

Borg will continue to work with TEG as a director and writer on future projects, while Berezin will seek a career as a performer.

TEG organises more than 200 live events a year through its owned promoters, TEG Dainty and TEG Live, and sells more than 28 million tickets annually via Ticketek, one of the ‘big two’ Australasian ticketing companies according to the International Ticketing Yearbook 2019.

 


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