Onex Partners IV to acquire SMG from Ares Capital

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By Ted Liu

Onex Corporation (TSX: ONEX) has agreed to acquire SMG Holdings Inc., in partnership with its existing management team, from Ares Capital Corporation (NASDAQ: ARCC). Financial terms were not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in early 2018.

The investment will be made by Onex Partners IV, Onex’ US $5.7 billion fund.

Ares Capital acquired SMG as part of its US $3.4 billion acquisition of SMG’s parent company, American Capital, Ltd. (formerly NASDAQ: ACAS) in January 2017. American Capital had previously acquired SMG for US $631 million in 2007.

West Conshohocken, Philadelphia based SMG is a leading global manager of convention centers, stadiums, arenas, theatres, performing arts centers and other venues. SMG manages nearly 240 venues globally. The company offers a comprehensive suite of services, allowing venue owners to outsource all facets of day-to-day operations, including facility staffing and training, food and beverage, event booking and management, event promotion, exhibitor services, financial management and ongoing maintenance services.

“SMG is the global gold standard in venue management,” said Amir Motamedi, a Managing Director with Onex. “We’re excited to work with Wes, his management team and the general managers within each of SMG’s venues to continue to provide the same world-class service their clients have come to expect.”

“Onex values the deep relationships our general managers have cultivated within the municipalities we serve, and its ownership mentality and long-term focus make it an ideal partner for us,” said Wes Westley, Chief Executive Officer of SMG. “On behalf of the SMG management team, I look forward to working with Onex as we enter this next chapter of continued growth and success.”

photo credit: Hershey Centre, Mississauga, SMG