CMA unconditionally clears AEG/Onex joint-venture

entertainment and leisure

On 11 September 2019 the UK competition authority (CMA) unconditionally cleared the proposed joint-venture between Anschutz Entertainment Group, Inc and Onex Corporation. Both companies operate and manage live entertainment venues in the United Kingdom and globally, including the Manchester Arena and The O2 Arena in London.

The CMA examined the transaction at a national level, focusing on the parties’ venue management operations and the degree of competition in venue space provision. With CRA’s support the parties were able to persuade the CMA that no competition concerns would arise on the grounds of horizontal unilateral effects, vertical effects or conglomerate effects.

CRA’s team supported the JV parties during the CMA’s proceedings with analysis of the extent to which the parties compete to host entertainment events at their major venues based on historic bookings and sales data, a financial model of the unique vertical arithmetic of the JV, and a review of the parties’ bids for the provision of venue management services at other locations.

The JV was also approved by the European Commission under a simplified procedure, given minimal overlaps in the parties’ operation in Germany.

Please see the CMA’s case page and the European Commission’s case page.