A year and a half after WME stepped into the lucrative world of concerts, Oprah Winfrey stadium tours, fashion and food events when they bought IMG for $2.2 billion, the Ari Emanuel and Patrick Whitesell run combined company is now hoping to step up to a new level of experience for such live occasions.
In a yet unnamed joint venture platform announced today with Internet of Things and Big Data pioneer AGT, WME | IMG aim to enhance the value of consumer’s live event experience. The eventual social digital target of that aim is personalized real time offsite and onsite content and engagement in the expanding event market. Which means, in often overlooked practical terms, you’ll have a singular source to know if you need to bring a sweater, how much Sam Adams beer is left at the venue, where your friends are and what they are doing and how to get a backstage or exclusive look at what’s going on, among other things.
“Our partnership with AGT marks a paradigm shift, recognizing that IoT technology and data science will fundamentally change the way people experience live events, as well as how they consume and share content that matters to them,” said Emanuel Thursday. It’s a meaningful connection that is meant to start before an event and extend well past it,” added Mati Kochavi, CEO of AGT International.
With over 800 sports, entertainment, culinary and fashion events currently under its umbrella, including the recently purchased Miss Universe Organization, the consistently growing WME | IMG plan to roll out the new platform with AGT in early 2016. The platform will likely have a name by then too. Right now, the running of the joint venture is split between teams at both companies with events and content coming from WME | IMG and the engineers and data coming from AGT. The joint venture is looking to consolidate its necessary resources under one roof, so to speak, in NYC with R&D additionally based in San Francisco, Germany and Israel.
Let’s just hope they can also overcome the data overload that craps out everyone’s phones at so many big shows too…