HMV sells iconic Hammersmith Apollo to American-German company Stage C


The 9,000-capacity venue was sold to American-German company Stage C for £32million.


By Asif Faruque

The HMV Hammersmith Apollo, which has hosted bands such as the Beatles, Queen and David Bowie, has been sold for £32m.

HMV agreed to sell the 9,000-capacity venue to American-German company, Stage C, which is a joint venture between Anschutz, the firm that owns the o2 arena, and German global ticketing firm CTS.

The sale of the venue will allow HMV to extend its £220m banking facility to September 2014, a decision which is also believed to be part of the company’s strategic review of their live music division, HMV Live.

“The strategic review of the remaining [HMV] Live business is ongoing and we will update the market as appropriate,” the company said.

“The Hammersmith Apollo is an iconic London venue and it has been a privilege to own it over the last three years,” said Simon Fox, chief executive of HMV Group.

“However, the sale will enable HMV to extend its bank facilities, strengthen its capital structure and ensure a strong future for the group.”

The HMV chain, which has 252 retail stores in the UK, has said that the sale of the Apollo will allow them to focus on their core retail business, while the proceeds from the sale will also be used to reduce the group’s £168 outstanding debt.

Brick-and-mortar media stores have come under increasing pressure as consumers turn to cheaper online stores to purchase music and film, however HMV have surprised City analysts by forecasting a return to profit in 2013 despite losses in the last financial year.

The Apollo opened in 1932 as the Gaumont Palace cinema and was host to David Bowie’s last concert as alter-ego Ziggy Stardust in 1973.

It is also the hosting venue for BBC stand-up comedy show ‘Live at the Apollo’.

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