The concession industry’s newest player just scored one of the biggest deals in the business. Legends Hospitality has signed an agreement to become the concessionaire at Live Nation’s portfolio of amphitheaters.
The F&B company created by the New York Yankees and Dallas Cowboys “is partnering with Live Nation, one of the largest live entertainment companies to deliver best-in-class food and beverages at their venues across the US,” reads a listing on Legends’ job board. “We are inspired to deliver unique culinary experiences built on a commitment to quality and freshness that are driven by a passion for innovation, connecting fans to their favorite artist creating lifelong memories at every location.”
Former Levy Restaurants Director of Operations Brent Sloan will be helping to head up Legends Hospitality Live Nation. He joined the company in January after spending nearly two decades at Levy Restaurants.
Sources close to the contract told us one of the selling points for Live Nation was that Legends would develop a separate new entity whose sole focus would be the Live Nation contract.
THE SPIEL — LEGENDS HAS BEEN ON A GROWTH SPURT LATELY
The Live Nation deal is just one of many the company has signed in recent weeks. In September, Legends replaced Aramark as operator of all on-site food and beverage concessions and premium catering at both Angel Stadium of Anaheim and Tempe Diablo Stadium in Arizona.
In L.A., Legends also has food contracts for two prominent college sports stadiums — the L.A. Memorial Coliseum and the Rose Bowl. Their sales division covers the San Francisco 49ers and Stanford University.
Along the way, they’ve grabbed business away from nearly every major concession company. In addition to Aramark, the company took away Sporting KC from Delaware North Company’s Sportservice and won the right to serve at the Sacramento Kings’ new arena. Levy had the contract for the team’s current home at Sleep Train Arena. And after a high-profile dispute with Centerplate, the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., signed with Legends Hospitality.
And the company won a highly sought-after contract for One World Plaza from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. That deal came under extra scrutiny because of the friendship between Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who shares control of the Port Authority with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.
THE REAL — THERE’S STILL A TON TO LEARN ABOUT THIS DEAL
We’re still learning about this deal so we’ve reached out Live Nation and Legends for further details, and reps at both companies have told us they’re working on getting Amplify some additional information.
In the meantime, here are a few things we’ll be watching for when the official announcement drops.
How long with this take? Does Live Nation make the transition all at once, or do they have to wait until the individual contracts at their buildings expire before Legends takes over? Several job listings for Legends have indicated the company is looking to hire employees in 11 states.
Which venues are included? Early numbers indicate a couple dozen amphitheaters are included in this deal, roughly 30 to 36 sheds. Live Nation doesn’t own all its amphitheaters outright and some venues will require outside approval before they switch to Legends.
Will shed food finally get better? Probably. Could it be any worse? Legends has some great food concepts at their current venues.