Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Mama takes the fiddle while the Fiddler becomes festive

Some horse trading in the live music market in the UK: Mama has bought the Mean Fiddler, rights to the trading name and its venue portfolio to add to the Barfly business. It plans to reopen The Mean Fiddler, and also bring the Garage out of mothballs.

Meanwhile, since the Mean Fiddler promotions company has flogged off its name, it's having to rebrand itself. Henceforward, then, the LiveNation promotional arm will be called Festival Republic. But since it was probably thought up by the same branding experts who came up with LiveNation, what do you expect?

Festival Republic will also continue to opereate the Astoria venues - although since the Astoria is due to be demolished to make way for Crossrail, that might just be until the Compulsory Purchase Order drops through the letterbox.


ian said...

I'm confused. Is this the Mean Fiddler under the Astoria, or the Mean Fiddler in Harlesden. Please tell me they haven't bought the Marquee too, or I may implode with confuddlement

Anonymous said...

I'm confused too!
Didn't the Forum just get sold to stop the merged LiveNation/Academy from having a monopoly on London venues?

So now Mama have the monopoly?

simon h b said...

As far as I can tell:

The Mean Fiddler in the Astoria is going to remain part of Festival Republic and will be renamed or something; it's the actual Mean Fiddler - the one that's been closed for five years - which Mama have bought.

LiveNation-Academy were going to have to dispose of a couple of venues to be given approval for the merger, but will still have a large number of venues as part of the united group. Mama will have a large share of the market, but will still have competition from the (former) Academy venues.

I think this is more about a cross LiveNation strategy for its various limbs - as the new name for Mean Fiddler suggests, their role will be promoting large events rather than running venues; I'd guess they'd have sold the Astoria if it had any value at all.

Anonymous said...

The Mean Fiddler, under Astoria, is going to imaginatively renamed 'Astoria 2', but I suppose that's a little better than LA2, which it used to be until they decided that MF needed a 'brand presense' in the West End...

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