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Volume 25 No. 23
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Private Equity Firm Onex Corp. To Acquire SMG Holdings; Deal Expected To Close In Early '18

Toronto-based private equity firm Onex Corp. said that it has "agreed to acquire" SMG Holdings, which manages "nearly 240 venues" for sports, entertainment and business including Soldier Field, according to the CP. Onex "didn't disclose how much it will pay," but the deal is "expected to close" in early '18 (CP, 12/11). TICKET NEWS' Katie Gainer noted a potential purchase by Live Nation was "speculated last month." Combined, Live Nation and SMG's venue and ticketing holdings "would have dwarfed all potential competitors, which would include AEG, Spectra, OVG Facilities and VenueWorks." However, if Live Nation’s bid were accepted, it would have "needed approval by regulatory agencies in several countries, similar to when the company purchased Ticketmaster a few years back, and many questioned whether such a monopolizing deal would have passed" (TICKETNEWS.com, 12/11). AMPLIFY's Dave Brooks noted since '07, SMG has been "owned by private equity firm American Capital." In '16, American Capital "was purchased" by L.A.-based asset management company Ares in a $3.2B cash and stock deal. SMG "holds the management contracts for marquee buildings" like U.S. Bank Stadium and Mercedes-Benz Superdome (AMPTHEMAG.com, 12/11).