SFX Entertainment Files For IPO, D&M Sells Allen & Heath

In a quick bit of industry financial news, two major stories that are of significant interest to the DJ sphere have come across the DJTT editorial desk in the last few days.

First up, SFX Entertainment just finished filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission for a $175 million public IPO offering. The company is a major US event promotions company which recently bought Beatport outright for $50 million. They’re also responsible for bringing the extremely popular Belgian Tomorrowland festival to the US, which is set to take place right outside of Atlanta in September.

Just how big is SFX in terms of event production? The SEC filing includes the below chart detailing the companies assets- totaling about 809 events and 52 festivals in 2012, for a total attendance of around 2.8 million.

In more DJ technology-focused news, D&M Holdings (if you’re not aware, that’s Denon + Marantz) sold off Allen & Heath last week to Electra Partners for a cool £43 million. Electra Partners is a private equity group that has investments in tons of industries – from home builders, to railroads, to pharmaceutical companies – but unlike D&M Holdings, it doesn’t have another DJ equipment manufacturer under its umbrella.

From the official press release, Allen & Heath’s Managing Director Glenn Rogers writes:

“We have an excellent catalogue of existing products and a number of exciting prospects in development. We see opportunity for expansion into new areas and look forward to building Allen & Heath’s long-term future alongside Electra Partners.”

While Allen & Heath and Denon never openly had product-by-product competitors, there’s no doubt that separating the companies will allow each a bit more freedom in the products they aim to produce. The real question is – what gear will this mean each company will now focus on? Let us know your speculation in the comments below.

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  • doclvly

    Their support on the xone k2 has been horrible. Has to be the least supported controller out there. Not sure if i should be excited they might actually pay attention to their customers, or be worried they now will care even less.

  • b

    For instance the db series..wich are nowwhere near the quality of the silver 92’s.

  • brodiculous

    im sure that there are enough suckers to buy into the sfx thing to make it profitable for the founders (think about all the people with expendable income going to these events, wanting to believe in it and buy into it), but i still hope the bubble bursts before they recoup their money, its a dirty game sillerman is playing

  • Legarza

    what gear will this mean each company will now focus on?


    I believe that each of these companies should invest more on their own DJ/Music software and add it to their own products.

    I have seem Native Instruments expanding very quickly in the past years and I see the others companies moving very slow which is bad for business. The only major winner here is Native Instrument which is pulling more customers to their products. Innovation is good even though you attract people to them by depending on their own products and that is what Native instrument is doing. They started with an audio interface and Traktor and now they are producing everything. If they continue on this path, In the near future, they will replace Pioneer from the top DJ gears.

    • ithinkmynameismoose

      I disagree, getting a foothold in the softwear market is a difficult game Traktor and serato are the two that really dominate the professional market at the moment. When Native started there wasn’t already a solidly embraced product therefore they were able to fill (relatively easily) a missing product. Nowadays having to muscle in from nothing is much harder.

      • Legarza

        yes, it is true….

        But it is a good idea to come up with a software and little by little they should be adding updates. Also, promoting ads with big DJs and make them to use it as much as they can while they touring (traktor did it). They must have a combination of software/hardwares/controllers and productions tool. Native Instruments already has them.

        I won’t get surprise if Native Instruments comes this year or the next one with their first Professional Club Mixer. Until now, they have made products portables and mobiles.

        They are adding new products little by little. (see the ad at the right ==> )

  • HellNegative

    I wonder how this will affect pricing, R+D, and licensing for parts between AH and Denon.

  • Dirtypumps

    I predict that the only people who will make money off this IPO are the SFX company founders. It smells to me like the dot com days, when Money Dudes bundled up a bunch of small companies, took the lot public, retired, let go of the reins, and then shorted the stock as the company sputtered. While 2.8 million festivalgoers is a lot of people, in terms of global reach, 2.8 million is not very large at all. SFX’s closest comparable is probably LiveNation, and as of today, LiveNation’s reach is almost 20 times the size with a reach of 60 million. Based on its numbers (http://investing.money.msn.com/investments/stock-price/?symbol=LYV) LiveNation is currently losing $157 million a year, and based on it’s forward P-to-E it looks to me as if it’s expected to continue losing money for a quite some time.

    • Dirtypumps

      I mean the royal “Money Dudes,” not any company or individual named Money Dudes.

    • Dan White

      Gotta love those Money Dudes.

      • keef

        Good DJ duo name.

    • Razzlesnaz

      I think you should wait for the prospectus to know what the story is on the numbers. My personal feeling is high finance should stay the fuck out of dance music, but capitalism marches on.

  • Anonymous

    I wonder if A&H build quality can eventually go back to where it once was with this change. The sound is still wonderful, but ever since manufacturing moved from UK to China, the issues with their DJ gear have been pretty vast. I’ve jumped ship to Pioneer for a while after going through 3 bad Xones in 1 year but can’t wait to someday be back!

    • Dan White

      Specifically with which Xone products?Just curious : )

      • ibsh

        My K2 had a loose, intermittent USB connection out of the box.

      • Anonymous

        2 bad Xone:42s and one bad Xone:DB4. 🙁 The 42s are known for their rather iffy build quality but I was pretty shocked on the DB4. It had a filter knob that was defective.

  • Dan White

    Finally, I’ll be able to call my broker and tell him to invest in dance music.