Fiddler hopes live gigs will stem losses

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The Independent Online

The live music promoter Mean Fiddler, which yesterday recorded half-year losses of £3.2m, is hoping to curb its financial losses by focusing only on live music venues, festivals and international tours.

The group, which helps to organise the Glastonbury festival, has recently disposed of loss-making bars and restaurants and the country music radio station Mean Country. These sales have raised £5.45m cash, which includes a windfall of £1.65m from a litigation settlement with Islington council.

Its chairman, Vince Power, said Mean Fiddler plans to take music venue brands, such as the Jazz Café, to other cities, including European cities.

Following the success of two European music festival events, Doctor Music outside Barcelona and Bizarre near Bonn, in Germany, further strategic European acquisitions are now in the pipeline. Increased access to venues both in the UK and Europe are set to attract more artists, the company believes.

Even though the Leeds, Reading and Glastonbury festivals boasted a record year of tickets sold, a Mean Fiddler spokesperson still declined yesterday to forecast when the music group would move into profit.