Is AEG the evil empire? A monopolistic beast, engulfing and devouring its competitors, steamrolling the rest into dust? On evidence, probably not.
The question has been bounced about in music circles since the entertainment giant’s live arm, AEG Presents, announced a strategic joint venture with Frontier Touring, which takes effect from July 1. Chances are, if you’ve seen a show in Australia, you’ve already encountered AEG and not had your beer stolen.
If you’ve spread out at Sydney’s Qudos Bank Arena, Perth Arena, Brisbane Entertainment Centre or the Sunshine State’s Suncorp Stadium, you’ve been AEG’d.
The Los Angeles-based AEG has a long-established presence here through its AEG Ogden joint venture, the largest venue management company in Asia Pacific (in case you missed it, AEG Facilities, the venue management subsidiary of AEG, announced a merger with SMG to create a new management empire called ASM Global, which would collect more than 300 facilities worldwide under a single banner).
Check out those synergies.
Though Anschutz Entertainment Group founder Philip Anschutz’s political interests in the United States have been well documented, AEG has been very much a steady hand in Australia. The promoter has quietly partnered with Michael Gudinski and his Frontier Touring Company for 12 years. Tours by the Rolling Stones, Leonard Cohen, Taylor Swift’s Red and 1989 Tours, Celine Dion, Justin Bieber, Rodriguez and Shawn Mendes were partnered-up.