Concert promoter MCD says dealing with regulators cost €3m

Sale of half of company to joint venture with Love Nation gets green light

Music festival Longitude is run by MCD.

Music festival Longitude is run by MCD.

 

Concert promoter MCD has said that dealing with regulatory investigations into the sale of half the company to a joint venture with Live Nation cost €3 million. The sale has passed its final regulatory hurdle.

The UK competition watchdog, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), has found that the deal does not raise competition concerns at the end of a 73-page report.

The ruling by the CMA after a 16-month investigation follows the Irish-based Competition and Consumer Protection Commission approving the deal last July.

The deal by Denis Desmond  and Caroline Downey to sell half of MCD to their joint venture with Live Nation, LN Gaiety Holdings (LNG) was first announced in August 2018.

Mr Desmond welcomed the CMA decision but stated that the process had left him “drained”.

He said that the financial cost to LNG in dealing with the regulatory investigations has been very high with €3 million costs incurred by the joint venture.

“That is just third-party costs and doesn’t take into account the huge amount of staff resources and huge amount of time involving teams of people dealing with the process.”

Mr Desmond said it was good that the authorities looked in detail at the deal in two very thorough investigations, but it was “disappointing” that the process had taken up so much resources and time.