AEG Presents and Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment are joining forces to purchase the 131-year-old venue, Webster Hall. The deal is rumored to be worth $35 million dollars and the partners are going to spend $10 million renovating the venue.
The legendary New York venue has been owned and operated by Lon Ballinger and his family for the past 27 years. AEG Presents and Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment will take over everything other than booking and talent buying, which will be run by Bowery Presents, which AEG owns.
AEG Presents is the live-Entertainment division of the larger company, AEG, and focuses on touring, festivals, venues, events and several other aspects of live entertainment.
CEO of Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment, Brett Yormark, said, “We’re going to preserve what Webster Hall means to the consumers and artists, but we will contemporize it.”
This deal comes at a time where AEG is doing its best to become a major player in the New York market. AEG is possibly most commonly known as the owner of the Staples Center and partner with Goldenvoice in putting on Coachella.
In January, AEG announced it purchased a 50 percent stake in Bowery Presents bringing several venues including Terminal 5 and Bowery Ballroom to AEG’s influence. In addition, AEG Presents expanded to the New York festival scene by introducing Panorama Festival to Randall’s Island In 2016.
Yormark said, “we’re trying to diversify our venue portfolio so we can connect with artists early and often.” He wants to create relationships and have artists that play these smaller venues get big and one day play the Barclays Center.
AEG Presents owns several venues around Los Angeles including the El Rey Theatre, the Fonda Theatre, the Novo, Microsoft Theatre, and several others. This is another major step towards AEG Present’s takeover of New York and the East Coast.
AEG Presents chairman, Jay Marciano, said, “you can’t replace a venue of its size and stature anywhere on the island of Manhattan, and we jumped at the chance to Webster Hall into our growing venue portfolio.”