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Superstruct Entertainment, one of the world’s biggest festival promoters, has been sold by equity fund owner Providence Equity Partners to investment giant KKR for a reported €1.3 billion (£1.1bn).

Superstruct owns more than a dozen major UK music festivals, as part of a portfolio of  nearly 90 across 10 countries. Launched by Creamfields festival (70,000) founder and former Live Nation exec James Barton and Roderik Schlosser in 2017, Superstruct expanded rapidly in recent years, buying up controlling stakes in UK festivals including Y Not (40,000), Bluedot (21,000), Victorious Festival (100,000), Tramlines (40,000), Boardmasters (50,000), NASS (15,000), South West Four (20,000) Truck (10,000) and Kendall Calling (25,000).

As part of the transaction, Providence has an option to invest €250 million into Superstruct. In statement it said, “Demand for live entertainment has grown significantly over the past decade and is expected to continue to expand, as consumer spending continues to shift from goods towards experience. KKR will support Superstruct in its next phase of development as one of the key players in a highly fragmented sector that continues to grow, expand and professionalise, whilst preserving the creative and cultural DNA of the company.”

KKR co-head of European private equity Philipp Freise said, “With a robust foundation as a top-tier live entertainment platform, we see significant growth opportunities ahead for Superstruct. Drawing on our strong partnership approach and experience in the digital entertainment and ticketing space, such as BMG, ProSiebenSat1, GetYourGuide, and Trainline, as well as KKR’s global resources and extensive network, we will support the company and its entrepreneurial team to bring their compelling portfolio of live event formats to a wider audience and drive further growth.”

Among the many mainland Europe festivals owned by Superstruct include Hungary’s 95,000-capacity Sziget, Croatian festival Hideout (15,000), Flow (10,000) in Finland and Oya (15,000) in Norway.

In November, Superstruct Entertainment cancelled the 2024 edition of NASS Festival due to the impact of the cost-of-living crisis and the “significant increase” in operational costs. Music, science and culture festival Bluedot is having a fallow year in 2024 due to the impact of weather at last year’s event.

Superstruct Entertainment being open to acquisition offers was first flagged in April, with Condé Nast owner Advance Publications, Blackstone, CVC, KKR and EQT among those reported as being interested.

New York-based KKR’s European investment interests include BMG, UK ticketing app Trainline, German broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1 and PR company FGS Global.