Blue Man Group Is Bought by Cirque du Soleil, With Plans to Expand

For almost 30 years, Blue Man Group has pervaded pop culture around the world with its eclectic, nonverbal percussive performances, zany lights and comedic movements. (O.K., fine. Dancing.) And of course, there is the blue body paint from head to toe.

Now, the Blue Men are joining the circus.

Cirque du Soleil, the global performance juggernaut best known for its acrobatic circus displays, on Thursday announced that it had acquired Blue Man Productions, with the mutual aim of expanding Blue Man’s reach beyond its five permanent United States shows (in New York, Boston, Chicago, Las Vegas and Orlando, Fla.), a world tour and one permanent international show (Berlin).

After the acquisition, Blue Man will be able to tap into Cirque’s worldwide access to theaters and marketers. In particular, both organizations have their eye on China, home to one of the most powerful and quickly growing entertainment industries in the world.

“We saw the potential for a marketing and distributing powerhouse like Cirque du Soleil to be able to distribute Blue Man Group and make their brand better known internationally,” said Daniel Lamarre, Cirque’s chief executive, in an interview. Cirque currently has 18 live shows worldwide.

The purchase provided an opportunity for Cirque to diversify its portfolio after years of financial tumult. In 2015, the company sold a majority stake to TPG, a private equity firm in Texas.

“The acquisition of Blue Man, for us, is kind of a breakthrough to make clear to people that Cirque is going from a circus company to becoming a global leader of entertainment,” Mr. Lamarre said.

The terms of the deal were not disclosed, although Mr. Lamarre said the sale price was in the “tens of millions.”

Chris Wink, who founded Blue Man Group in 1991 along with Phil Stanton and Matt Goldman, said that the idea to sell came about a few years ago, as the company was looking to gain a foothold in other parts of the world. China specifically came to mind.

More Details @ New York Times

Blue Man Group Is Bought by Cirque du Soleil, With Plans to Expand

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