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Irish competition watchdog examines LNG-MCD merger

23 January 2019

THE TAKEOVER of Ireland’s dominant promoter MCD Productions by the UK-based LN-Gaiety (LNG) is under investigation by the Republic of Ireland’s Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC).

Stage two scrutiny by the CCPC will seek to determine whether the deal will lead to a substantial lessening of competition in the market.

MCD is owned by Denis Desmond and his wife Caroline Downey, who also own 50 per cent of LNG with Live Nation Entertainment (LNE), through their company Gaiety Investments (see Audience 223). Desmond is LNE UK’s non-executive chairman.

CCPC will likely consider the situation with venues in Dublin, as MCD owns The Olympia (cap. 1,600), The Gaiety (2,000), The Ambassador (1,200) and The Academy (650), while LNE owns the city’s 3 Arena (cap. 14,000).

“It is just part of the standard process for this sort of thing, they are just doing their job,” Desmond tells LIVE UK. “We expect it to be resolved by late June, early July. We don’t expect any issues.”

Neither the CPCC or LNE would comment as LIVE UK went to print.

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