Munich/Zurich, 24 January 2020. CTS EVENTIM, one of the world’s leading providers of ticketing and live entertainment, is acquiring 60% of the shares in Zurich-based Gadget Entertainment AG and in that connection is also acquiring a 60% stake in the St. Gallen-based wepromote Entertainment Group Switzerland AG.
By making this acquisition, CTS EVENTIM is intensifying its involvement in Switzerland’s live events sector and significantly expanding its business activities in that country. At the same time, CTS EVENTIM is reorganising its operative business in Switzerland. On completion of the transaction, Gadget Entertainment AG and wepromote Entertainment Group Switzerland AG will merge their operations with those of ABC Production AG, which already belongs to CTS EVENTIM, in order to jointly exploit the scale effects that are generated. The name of the new company, domiciled in Zurich, will be ‘Gadget abc Entertainment Group AG’. By acquiring majority stakes in these Swiss enterprises, CTS EVENTIM is enlarging its live events portfolio by 400 to 500 concerts per year and by popular music festivals such as ‘Open Air St. Gallen’, ‘SummerDays Festival’, ‘Seaside Festival’ and ‘Unique Moments’. At the same time, EVENTIM LIVE is adding a further 32 promoters to its national and international network.
CTS EVENTIM CEO Klaus-Peter Schulenberg commented that, ‘By acquiring majority stakes in Gadget and wepromote, and subsequently merging them with ABC Production, we are efficiently reorganising our business activities in the Swiss live events sector. Gadget abc Entertainment Group AG will be a powerful events and entertainment network. We can thus deliver impressive proof of the great progress we are making in expanding EVENTIM LIVE, our international promoter network. This means we can offer artists not only highly performant ticketing systems, but also broader opportunities for international tours and customised solutions – all on a one-stop basis.’
The Gadget Entertainment and wepromote team has extensive and prolonged experience in the music and entertainment business and operates in a variety of segments: concerts, festivals, live events, management, booking, publishing and brand partnerships.
The newly-formed abc Entertainment Group AG will be managed by five partners: Christof Huber, the festival director in St. Gallen and Arbon, Cyrill Stadler, for many years the CFO and Verwaltungsrat of the Wepromote Group, and the Gadget partners Eric Kramer, Oliver Rosa and Stefan Wyss. Kramer and Rosa will represent the company as Managing Partners, whereas Wyss will manage the Live Events business and Huber the Festival business. Cyrill Stadler will act as the Financial Director.
‘We have been jointly preparing for this step for quite some time. Due to the involvement of CTS Eventim and our taking over the business of abc Production, we can generate some crucial momentum for further growth’, says Christof Huber, Festival Director at Gadget abc Entertainment Group AG. Oliver Rosa, one of the two managing partners, adds that, ‘Thanks to our diversification, we are well positioned for the changing market environment and want to exploit the many scale effects in the best way possible.’ Eric Kramer, one of the two designated managing partners, sums up by saying ‘Our consistency and reliability as a key player in the Swiss music business means that we can lead the way into the future, in step with the market.’
According to André Béchir, Managing Director of ABC Production, ‘Merging these companies is a logical and consequential step and will have a sustained impact on the Swiss market in the live events segment. I am looking forward to the new partnership and to applying my extensive experience to actively assist Gadget abc Entertainment Group AG in my role as consultant.’ André Béchir, Switzerland’s pioneer in the live entertainment business, will also bring his strong network and good contacts with agents into the new partnership.
Dr Frithjof Pils, Managing Director of EVENTIM LIVE, added that, ‘It was only recently, in March 2019, that we concentrated our promoter activities in the new entity called EVENTIM LIVE. Within less than a year, our network already comprises 32 international and national promoters, who each year organise more than 40 festivals and around 6,000 live events attended by 12 million visitors in 13 countries. What this shows is that our idea is successful and is well received by the market. The merger of the three firms – Gadget, wepromote and ABC Production – to form the new Gadget abc Entertainment Group AG is creating one of Switzerland’s most powerful entertainment companies.’
About CTS EVENTIM
CTS EVENTIM is one of the leading international providers of ticketing services and live entertainment. In 2018, around 250 million tickets were marketed using the company’s systems – be it through stationary box offices, online or from mobile terminals. Its online portals operate under brands such as eventim.de, oeticket.com, ticketcorner.ch, ticketone.it and entradas.com. The EVENTIM Group also includes many concert, tour and festival promoter companies for events like ‘Rock am Ring’, ‘Rock im Park’, ‘Hurricane’, ‘Southside’ and ‘Lucca Summer’. In addition, some of Europe’s most renowned venues are operated by CTS EVENTIM, for example the LANXESS Arena in Cologne, the Waldbühne in Berlin and the EVENTIM Apollo in London. CTS EVENTIM AG & Co. KGaA (ISIN DE 0005470306) has been listed on the stock exchange since 2000 and is currently a member of the MDAX segment. In 2018, its 3,141-strong workforce generated more than 1.2 billion Euro in sales revenue in 21 countries.
About Gadget Entertainment
Gadget Entertainment AG was founded in 1994 and is Switzerland’s leading full-service music agency. Gadget organises and books numerous concerts by artists of national and international repute in venues of all sizes. In its role as a management company, Gadget promotes the careers of many wellknown Swiss performers. In addition, Gadget releases albums on its proprietary record label and runs its own publishing house. In the field of youth and music marketing, Gadget designs extensive campaigns and develops strategic concepts for the entertainment industry. Internet: www.gadget.ch
wepromote is an umbrella brand for pooling the resources of Gadget Entertainment AG, Incognito Productions AG, wildpony AG, OpenAir St.Gallen AG, SummerDays Festival AG, Seaside Festival AG and wepromote Live AG. The wepromote partners exploit the synergies and inject their collective know-how into existing and new projects. Their declared aim is to implement joint music and concert projects and to nurture new talents from Switzerland and abroad through the wepromote channels in a sustainable way from the outset. In addition to live events, wepromote’s full range of services includes artist booking, event concepts, event consulting, artist management, marketing and communication consulting, as well as production of third-party events.