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Live Nation acquires stake in Boomtown Fair

Live Nation has acquired a minority stake in the UK’s largest independent festival, Boomtown Fair, IQ can reveal.

First held in 2009, the Hampshire festival has hosted acts such as Gorillaz, Lauryn Hill, M.I.A., The Streets, Wu-Tang Clan, The Specials, Cypress Hill, Limp Bizkit, Chase & Status and Madness down the years.

Documents filed with Companies House show Live Nation’s UK & Ireland chair Denis Desmond and COO Stuart Douglas were appointed as directors of both Boomtown Festival UK and parent company Circus of Boom last month.

The duo join the event’s co-founders Luke Mitchell and Christopher Rutherford, and finance manager Mark Nicholls on the board.

Neither Live Nation or Boomtown have commented on the deal.

Boomtown was awarded £991,000 last year via the UK government’s Culture Recovery Fund

Having been forced to cancel its 2020 and 2021 edition due to the pandemic, Boomtown was awarded £991,000 last year via the UK government’s Culture Recovery Fund, which organisers said would secure the future of the festival.

The most recent edition of the 76,999-cap event took place this past weekend (10-14 August) at the Matterley Estate near Winchester. Entitled Boomtown Chapter One: ‘The Gathering’, artists included Shy FX, Kool & The Gang, Four Tet, De La Soul and Kae Tempest.

Live Nation UK hired IME Music owner Ian Evans earlier this year, while the company has further bolstered its ranks in the past few months by acquiring London-based music and arts live events company Parallel Lines Promotions and elevating Maddie Arnold to promoter in its concerts division.

Stephen Vondy of Liverpool Sound City and I Love Live Events also recently joined the firm as a promoter.


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