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O2 renews deal to brand the Academy venues

By | Published on Tuesday 25 July 2017

Shepherds Bush Empire

O2, as everyone knows, is a shit company. A really shit company. I mean, if you’ve got the time, let me explain. If there was a list of the shittest companies in the world, starting with the moderately shit companies and working all the way to the shittiest of shitty shit companies, O2 wouldn’t be on that list. It would have its own list. At the top of that list it would simply say “SHIT”. So shit a company is O2 it’s not really a company, it’s just shit. So I was wrong. Apologies. O2 isn’t a shit company. It’s just a shit.

So yeah, Team O2 pissed me off big time a few years back when they kindly “upgraded” the internet at CMU HQ, by which I mean they utterly fucked it up, made me sit for several millennia on hold to an utterly useless helpline that, somewhat ironically for a telecommunications company, crackled like fuck, and then washed their hands of the whole debacle because, as I may have mentioned, O2 is a shit company. Sorry, I mean O2 is a shit.

Now, I’m not one to hold a grudge. I’m sure you can see that already. Let bygones be bygones, that’s my mantra. OK, yes, I pointlessly boycott any venue with O2 in its name to this day, which might sound a little like a grudge. But don’t worry, it’s a white middle class boycott where you steadfastly refuse to do business with a company and all and any of its partners until a band you really like is playing the O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire and then you make a temporary exception for just one night.

I justify this partly on the basis that no one actually calls the O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire the O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire, because doing so would be insane. And partly because I commit to spend at least some of the evening seething about all the hours I wasted on the O2 no-help-at-all-line. And it turns out, if you seethe long enough the roof falls in.

Anyway, O2 has agreed a new ten year deal with Live Nation and its Academy Music Group business that will see the phone brand pointlessly slapped on the side of nineteen venues around the UK for another ten years, including the Shepherd’s Bush Empire of course, because that’s the sort of thing marketing directors like spending money on.

O2 also gets other goodies for its customers as part of the deal, of course, like priority access to tickets, fast-track entry and free cloakroom space. All the nonsense you have to offer your customers to keep them on board when your actual product is shit.

Says O2 CMO Nina Bibby: “We know our customers love live experiences, and O2 Academy venues are a huge part of the UK’s live music scene, which is why we’re extremely pleased to be continuing our longstanding relationship with both Live Nation and Academy Music Group”.

Lovely stuff! Let the boycott continue, I say. And I know what you’re all thinking – however shit O2 may be, at least this is better than when Carling sponsored the Academy venues meaning that you couldn’t get a decent lager at a gig. But you’re forgetting, I don’t drink. And I was on hold to that helpline for a very, very, very long time.