Last month Joop van den Ende – the founder of international theatre company Stage Entertainment – disclosed that it had sold 60% of its shares to CVC Capital Partners. The remaining shares stay in the hands of the founder. The transaction was supported by nine external firms, including OC&C Strategy Consultants, KPMG, Deloitte and PwC.
State Entertainment was founded 17 years ago and has since developed itself to the biggest Dutch player in the musicals market, providing entertainments to ten million visitors yearly. The music business has large international growth plans (including in Europe, South-America and Asia), and to realise that growth the now 73 year old founder Joop van den Ende decided to sell 60% of the company’s shares to investment fund CVC Capital Partners, which has $60 billion under management and is one of the biggest private equity firms in the world.
“With the new shareholder there is now room to take larger steps. Within five years we will be able to grow from the current 10 million visitors to 20 million visitors per year,” says Van den Ende, that reflects that: “I have every confidence that the partnership with CVC Capital Partners will give us the room to realise the ambitions of Stage Entertainment, both in the creative and the financial domain.”
CVC Capital Markets also sees the huge growth potential of Stage Entertainment in the future. Ivo Lurvink, partner at CVC Capital Partners: “We believe in the growth potential of the live entertainment sector in general and we are impressed with Stage Entertainment’s position in the musicals arena. With its musicals the company is able to reach an audience of millions, which we expect will increase in numbers in the years to come, through among other things, expansion of activity into new markets.”
The transaction between Stage Entertainment and CVC Capital Partners was assisted by nine external parties. The seller, Van den Ende, was advised on the financial side by bankers from ABN Amro (Dealteam: Lodewijk Sodderland, Laurens van der Gun, Joost-Jan van Halder, Ivo van Delft, Rutger van Nouhuijs) and ING (Robert Specken), while being further supported by his own deal-team, made up of Alexandra Schaapveld, Peter Prein and Fleur Mooren-la Bastide. Legal advice came from De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek (Dealteam: Arne Grimme, Jan Marten van Dijk, Okke Suurenbroek, Violet de Kruif en Louis van Roessel). Dealmakers from the Corporate Finance practice of PwC were also part of the transaction.
Stage Entertainment - Dealmakers
The buyer CVC Capital Partners was supported by merger and takeover advisors from Quore Capital, KPMG, Clifford Chance (Dealteam: Hans Beerlage, Mark Loefs, Michiel Sunderman, Mirjam van der Kaay, Joel Erwteman), Deloitte and OC&C Strategy Consultants. Ronald van Wechem and Reinout Oerlemans, both co-founders of Eyeworks (a Netherlands-based television and film production company acquired by Warner Bros in 2014), acted as advisors and as a sounding board.
The transaction is expected to be closed in the second half of the year. After the deal closure, Van de Ende will still have 40% of the shares of Stage Entertainment, and in addition, he will remain personally, and as a shareholder, closely involved with the strategy of the company.