ICG completes purchase of OVO Arena Wembley from Quintain

Quintain, the developer and asset manager behind Wembley Park, has completed the sale of London’s OVO Arena Wembley to fund manager Intermediate Capital Group.

The sale was first reported back in July and Quintain confirmed yesterday (Wednesday) that the deal has been completed. Financial terms of the sale were not disclosed but it had been reported that Quintain was seeking £50m (€57.5m/$57.5m) for the sale of the arena, which has a capacity of 12,500 and is operated by ASM Global.

Quintain said the sale of the arena forms part of its strategy to focus future activities on build-to-rent residential across development and asset management, neighbourhood retail and placemaking.

OVO Arena Wembley was built in 1934. Primarily a music venue, the arena also hosts sporting events and was used to stage badminton and gymnastics competitions during the London 2012 Olympics.

Quintain purchased the arena in 2002 as part of an initial acquisition of 44 acres of land in Wembley Park and the venue underwent a £36m refurbishment in 2006. It is the second largest arena in London after The O2.

James Saunders, chief executive of Quintain, said: “As we build out the Wembley Park estate, with 3,000 more homes still to deliver, we continue to focus our efforts on our build-to-rent ambition, neighbourhood retail and placemaking. Naturally, we will work with ICG and ASM to ensure that the world-famous OVO Arena Wembley will remain an important part of this world-class destination and neighbourhood.”

Andreas Papadolambakis, principal of ICG Real Estate, added: “We’re delighted to be the new custodians of the iconic OVO Arena and to be partnering with ASM, a globally renowned arena operator. The investment represents ICG Real Estate’s first in the content and live entertainment space, a sector which is benefiting from structural tailwinds.

“As music consumption has pivoted towards streaming, touring has become increasingly important for artists whilst consumers are dedicating an increasing portion of their disposable income to experiences over material goods. We expect this to be the first of a programme of investments in the European content and live entertainment market.”

The venue was previously known as the Wembley Arena and then SSE Arena Wembley. It adopted its current moniker in February after OVO Energy was announced as the new sponsor.

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