September 20, 2021
Superstruct Entertainment, the UK-based festival group behind events like elrow, Hideout, and Parookaville has purchased Dutch festival group ID&T. Known for festivals like Awakenings, Mysteryland, Sensation, and over 80 other nightlife brands ID&T operates many of the largest dance music festivals in the world.
Superstruct is owned by private equity firm Providence Equity Partners. The US-based firm specializes in media, communications, education, and software. They hold partnerships and deals with other key players in the music industry like Warner Music Group and pro-audio retailer Sweetwater. Superstruct purchased ID&T from Axar Capital for somewhere between $150M and $200M, according to Netherlands-based financial publication Het Financieele Dagblad.
Superstruct is helmed by James Barton, founder of the iconic Manchester superclub Cream and the Creamfields festival. He is also the former President of Electronic Music at Live Nation. His background in event production stretches back over 30 years. The Superstruct umbrella now stretches across the world and includes Wacken Open Air and a majority stake in Sónar.
With the global festival market in one of its most uncertain years in history, this purchase does come with some risk. The news comes on the heels of Live Nation's purchase of Latin America's biggest concert promoter OCESA Entrtenumiento for nearly $450M. The last time we witnessed a consolidation of this level in dance music was when SFX bought ID&T and dance music retailer Beatport in 2013. Those deals ended in a debt-for-equity swap that allowed SFX to wipe $300M in debt from its books. Despite the current climate, dance music is more popular than ever, and the long-term future of festivals does look promising.