March 21, 2023

DealBook: Anschutz to Explore Sale of Entertainment Group

The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, Calif., in April.Damon Winter/The New York TimesThe Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, Calif., in April.

5:19 a.m. | Updated

The Anschutz Company has announced that it is looking to sell Anschutz Entertainment Group, a sports and entertainment company.

The announcement, which was made late on Tuesday, did not provide a potential sale price for the company, which has grown into a multiarmed entertainment giant.

Anschutz Entertainment is involved in running facilities like the Staples Center in Los Angeles and events like the Coachella music festival; owning sports teams like the Los Angeles Kings hockey team; and selling tickets through its AEG Live subsidiary.

Anschutz Entertainment is controlled by its namesake billionaire owner, Philip Anschutz, who may still decide against a sale. The Anschutz Company said it had retained Blackstone Advisory Partners to advise on the potential sale.

“This is an appropriate time to transition AEG to a new qualified owner,” Cannon Y. Harvey, the president of the Anschutz Company, said in a statement. “We will conduct this process in a manner that avoids disruption of the day-to-day operations of AEG and its constituencies.”

No timeframe was given about when a potential sale may occur.

Anschutz Entertainment came close to selling about 49 percent of AEG Live to Ticketmaster and Cablevision four years ago, though nothing came of the talks. Ticketmaster instead merged with LiveNation, though the combined entity agreed to license its ticketing software to AEG Live to satisfy regulators.

Anschutz Entertainment is part of the Anschutz empire, whose roots lay in the oil-drilling company that Mr. Anschutz’s father founded. It has since branched out not only into live entertainment but also railroads, news publications and movie theaters.

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