Academy Music Group (AMG) has confirmed its expansion in Scotland with the announcement of O2 Academy Edinburgh, following the acquisition of the 3,000 capacity Edinburgh Corn Exchange.
A category B listed building with a unique history, the Corn Exchange was built in 1909 and over the last two decades, Marco’s Leisure has transformed the Corn Exchange to become one of the city’s largest standing, multi-purpose, award-winning venues.
Its reputation for live music began with a sell-out show with Blur in 1999, leading to outstanding performances in recent years with major international headline acts including Foo Fighters, Biffy Clyro, Oasis, Coldplay, Faithless, Arctic Monkeys, Garbage, Grace Jones, Radiohead, Paulo Nutini, Pulp, Calvin Harris and many more.
“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” said Academy Music Group Chief Operating Officer, Graham Walters. “We see huge potential with this venue, it fits with our ethos of investing in heritage buildings, with the right capacity of 3,000 to bring world-class entertainment to the city. 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.”
O2 Head of Sponsorship, Gareth Griffiths added: “The new O2 Academy Edinburgh is a brilliant addition to our O2 Academy estate. It’s a beautiful venue and as entertainment begins to return this further demonstrates O2 and Academy Music Group’s commitment to enhancing the live industry in Scotland, one of the best places to watch music in the UK.”
Marco’s Leisure Managing Director, Paul DeMarco, concluded: “When Marco’s Leisure bought the Corn Exchange in Chesser 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 3 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. Marco’s will continue to operate and expand its leisure business.”
Academy Music Group has had a long-standing partnership agreement with O2 since January 2009. This strategic naming-rights venue deal sees customers take advantage of exclusive benefits. Edinburgh Corn Exchange will become O2 Academy Edinburgh from 1 September 2021, adding to the existing UK portfolio of now 20 award-winning venues that are owned and operated by Academy Music Group, including Scotland’s O2 Academy Glasgow and London’s iconic O2 Academy Brixton and O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire.