Business News Deals Live Business

Academy Music Group acquires Edinburgh Corn Exchange

By | Published on Tuesday 31 August 2021

Academy Music Group

The Academy Music Group has announced that it has acquired the Edinburgh Corn Exchange music venue, which it is now relaunching as the O2 Academy Edinburgh.

“We’ve been keen to expand our O2 Academy brand in Scotland for some time and we’re delighted to now be in Edinburgh, it’s an inspiring city with a thriving appetite for music and culture”, says Graham Walters, Chief Operating Officer at the Live Nation-allied Academy Music Group.

“We see huge potential with this venue, it fits with our ethos of investing in heritage buildings, with the right capacity of 3000 to bring world-class entertainment to the city”, he adds. “It also has a number of diverse secondary spaces, flexible formats and configurations that we’ll be looking at over the coming months to complement programming and events in the main auditorium”.

The 112 year old listed building was bought by Marco’s Leisure in 1999 and converted into a 3000 capacity music-centric venue. Opening with a headline show by Blur, it went on to host Foo Fighters, Oasis, Coldplay, Faithless, Arctic Monkeys, Radiohead, Calvin Harris and more. Although, in more recent years it tended to be used more for private parties, conferences and other non-music events.

Managing Director of Marco’s Leisure, Paul DeMarco, says: “When Marco’s Leisure bought the Corn Exchange 22 years ago, we started with a plan to be Edinburgh’s go-to concert venue and ran over 300 live shows, as well as welcoming three million visitors to gigs, conferences, banquets, weddings, exhibitions and parties, creating one of the busiest and most successful venues in Scotland”.

“We are happy to pass on the baton to the top professionals in the live music industry who will ensure it continues to play a major role in Scotland’s events industry for many more years to come”, he goes on. “Marco’s will continue to operate and expand its leisure business”.

The venue’s first show under its new ownership will be headlined by Declan McKenna on 3 Sep. The Corn Exchange – sorry, O2 Academy Edinburgh – is Academy Music Group’s second venue in Scotland, it having operated the O2 Academy Glasgow since 2003.