Cirque du Soleil is adding the Blue Man Group to its international entertainment portfolio in deal that is described as “a perfect cultural fit.”
The company’s acquisition of New-York-based Blue Man Productions gives it ownership of a show that has been performed in over 20 countries and seen by more than 35 million people since 1991. The production is known for its original aesthetics, including that of its blue faced performers, award-winning musical talent and “immersive experience know-how”.
The deal considerably widens Cirque du Soleil’s already broad audience pool. In addition to its two touring Blue Man Group productions, there are currently resident shows in New York, Boston, Las Vegas, Chicago, Orlando and Berlin. Like Cirque du Soleil’s shows, Blue Man traditionally plays in high traffic locations. The transaction is in line with Montreal-based company’s strategy to diversify its offering beyond circus arts. It is also planning a theme park in Mexico.
“We want to broaden our horizons, develop new forms of entertainment, reach out to new audiences and expand our own creative capabilities,” explains Cirque du Soleil president and CEO, Daniel Lamarre. “We are extremely excited to welcome the iconic Blue Man Group to our portfolio of shows. Their unbridled creativity makes them a perfect cultural fit for Cirque du Soleil. Our extensive marketing research also confirms that Blue Man Group is a strong ‘love brand’ with a solid fan base – something else our two brands have in common.”
Founders’ crazy dream
Blending technology, music and comedy, Blue Man Group’s bold, colourful and playful shows have been peformed across the globe since for over 25 years. With a history and values similar to that of Cirque, the company was born of a “crazy dream” in the minds of its three founders.
Blue Man Group co-founder Phil Stanton explains: “When we began our Blue Man journey, we set our sights on creating theatre that would bring people together in a celebration of human connection. We have been humbled, amazed and inspired by the audience responses we have received over the years.”
“Now we find ourselves on the brink of our next chapter, and we have big ideas for the future,” adds co-founder Chris Wink. “Only a global creative powerhouse like Cirque du Soleil could help us achieve our vision. Their commitment to artistic quality and originality is unparalleled and their creative resources are vast.”
Stanton and Wink previously owned Blue Man Productions together with GF Capital Private Equity Fund. Goldman Sachs acted as financial advisor to the company in the deal with Cirque du Soleil.
Image courtesy Blue Man Group