BUDAPEST Jan 13 U.S.-based private equity firm
Providence Equity Partners has bought a majority stake in
Hungarian festival company Sziget, the companies said in a joint
statement on Friday, aiming to expand the events
Sziget draws about 500,000 people every year to its flagship
event in Budapest and hundreds of thousands more to half a dozen
other festivals around Hungary. Now in its 25th season, it has
received several "best festival" titles from the European
The website of the local edition of Forbes Magazine said
Rhode Island's Providence - which has total assets of about $47
billion under management - bought a 70 percent stake in Sziget.
One source with knowledge of the matter verified the 70
percent figure to Reuters.
The statement did not disclose a purchase price nor did it
detail any further commitment, financial or otherwise.
The new investors will help "further the development of the
Sziget festivals and support Sziget's ambition to take its
festival brands global", the statement said.
"We will be able to make a giant leap forward and embark on
the ambitious projects that have been in our pipeline for some
time," said Sziget founder and owner Karoly Gerendai, whose team
will retain a 30 percent stake in the company.
The current management will retain management rights and
operational control of the festivals of the Sziget brand.
The team will be supported by several international festival
promoters such as James Barton, former President of Electronic
Music for Live Nation and founder of Creamfields Festival.
Sziget had total revenue of about 10 billion forints ($34.6
million) in 2015, the last year for which data is available, and
Gerendai told the daily Vilaggazdasag last year that he expected
2016 revenues to be 15 to 20 percent higher.
($1 = 289.0000 forints)
(Reporting by Marton Dunai; Editing by Alison Williams)