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Roxodus promoter MF Live files for bankruptcy

MF Live, the company behind cancelled Canadian rock festival Roxodus, has filed for bankruptcy.

The company, whose “sole purpose was to organise the Roxodus Music Fest”, owes over CA$18 million (US$13.8m) to around 200 creditors, including $5m ($3.8m) to ticketing provider Eventbrite and $11.1m ($8.5m) to contractors Taurus Site Services. MF Live’s assets equate to $154,000 ($118,000) in cash.

According to liquidator Grant Thornton Limited, “the event did not generate sufficient ticket sales to cover the expected costs, leaving MF Live Inc. insolvent.”

“We also understand that earlier wet weather posed certain challenges in preparing the site for the event and prevented MF Live Inc. from being able to host a safe event,” reads the document.

“The event did not generate sufficient ticket sales to cover the expected costs, leaving MF Live insolvent”

A statement on the festival’s website blames “rainy weather” for the cancellation of the festival, which was to feature performances from Nickelback, Blondie, Aerosmith and Kid Rock.

Last week, Eventbrite announced it would provide all ticketholders with a refund, while continuing “to aggressively pursue the return of funds from the festival’s creators.”

At the same time, MF Live co-founder Mike Dunphy denied all responsibility for issuing refunds. Dunphy also refuted rumours that he had “stolen monies”.

Dunphy and fellow MF Live founder Fab Loranger parted ways ten days before the festival’s cancellation and are no longer on speaking terms, according to an interview with CTV News.

The first meeting of the creditors is scheduled to take place at 10 a.m. on 30 July at the Grant Thornton offices in Toronto.

 


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Eventbrite pledges refunds amid Roxodus controversy

Eventbrite, the ticketing partner for Canadian rock festival Roxodus, is refunding all those who bought tickets to the event following its cancellation last week.

Roxodus organisers MF Live cancelled the festival, which was scheduled to take place from 11 to 14 July at Edenvale Airport in Ontario, due to “tremendous rainy weather” which “impacted our ability to produce the festival”.

Aerosmith, Alice Cooper, Kid Rock, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Nickelback, Billy Idol and Blondie were among the acts featuring on the Roxodus bill.

“After multiple attempts to communicate and secure funds back from the abruptly-cancelled Roxodus Music Fest in Ontario, Canada, the organisers have provided no indication that they will refund ticket holders,” reads a statement issued by Eventbrite on Sunday (7 July).

“We believe attendees deserve to get their money back now, so we have set up an Eventbrite-funded Fan Relief Program [sic] to make all Roxodus ticket holders whole while we continue to aggressively pursue the return of funds from the festival’s creators.”

Eventbrite’s statement follows an announcement from MF Live co-founder Mike Dunphy, in which the Roxodus organiser denied all responsibility for refunds.

“My role at MF Live was that of talent buyer/operations. I did not sign contracts, issue cheques or control funds received from ticket sales,” wrote Dunphy.

“After multiple attempts to communicate and secure funds back from the abruptly-cancelled Roxodus Music Fest, the organisers have provided no indication that they will refund ticket holders”

“Eventbrite is the ticketing partner with whom Roxodus sold tickets. They alone have all purchaser information. Since I am not in control of financial items regarding Roxodus, I cannot communicate plans for refunds.”

Dunphy, who stated he had no involvement in decisions relating to the cancellation of the festival, also denied that he had “stolen monies as widely rumoured on social media.”

Reports state that local police had been investigating a former employee of MF Live prior to Roxodus’ cancellation. It is unclear whether the investigation has any relation to the festival.

Fellow MF Live co-founder, Fab Loranger, told reporters at Global News: “Our specific role in the entire project was to provide the funding. We invested millions of dollars. We relied on Mr Dunphy, his representations and his advice, to ensure everything was properly taken care of. It obviously wasn’t. We lost it all.”

Dunphy rejected Loranger’s statement, which he termed “incorrect”.

Ticketholders will receive refunds from Eventbrite within seven business days from 7 July. Tickets for Roxodus started at CA$129 (US$99), with camping packages costing between $219 (US$168) and $1,600 (US$1,225).

 


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Paco “heading in the right direction” with new tours

Independent German promoter Paco Agency is gearing up for its biggest summer yet with new tours by King Crimson, Nickelback and Alice Cooper, Joe Perry and Johnny Depp’s supergroup Hollywood Vampires.

Nickelback will play six dates in Germany in May and June 2018 as part of their Feed the Machine tour, while Hollywood Vampires will play five shows throughout June. King Crimson’s Uncertain Times tour, meanwhile, includes five German dates in June and July.

It is the first time Munich-based Paco, whose previous tours include Status Quo, Magnum, Crosby, Stills and Nash, Chicago and Elvis Costello, has worked with the three bands.

Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger says: “We can’t wait to get back and play for all the amazing people of Europe. The shows are always some of our most memorable and the energy that our European friends bring every night is positively infectious. This is, by far and away, our biggest and best production to date, and we’re ready for one hell of a party.”

“We’ve proven ourselves many times over the years and it just shows that hard work really does pay off”

Assistant promoter Jenny Brandl tells IQ the new tours represent a turning point for Paco. “We’ve had the pleasure of working with amazing artists such as Status Quo, Alice Cooper and many more over the years, but it’s always a great experience and an honour to be chosen for artists you’ve never worked with,” she comments.

“With Nickelback, Hollywood Vampires and King Crimson we’ve reached an even higher level of professionalism and are definitely heading in the right direction for the future. We took a shot and seized the opportunity and it worked out for us and we’re beyond happy about it.

“We’ve proven ourselves many times over the years and it just shows that hard work really does pay off.”

 


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