City Football group joins Oak View Group

24 May 2021

City Football Group joins Oak View Group as a Joint Venture Partner in Co-op Live, the 23,500-capacity venue at the Etihad Campus, East Manchester. Oak View Group and City Football Group will coordinate on jobs, sustainability and advancing the Etihad Campus as a global sport, leisure & entertainment destination.

Oak View Group (OVG) today confirmed City Football Group (CFG), the global operator of football and sports-related business, has become OVG’s equal joint venture partner and investor in Co-op Live, alongside Harry Styles, who has taken a minority stake in the pioneering venue. Together, OVG and CFG will deliver one of the world’s most advanced and sustainable venues that pushes the boundaries of live entertainment experiences and advances the Etihad Campus as an entertainment and leisure destination that makes Manchester an even more attractive city for people from the UK and around the world to visit.

Co-op Live plays a pivotal role in CFG's ambitions to continue developing the Etihad Campus as a global sport, leisure and entertainment destination that is a significant source of community, employment and economic opportunity for Manchester. The new joint venture builds on the 2019 pre-planning collaboration that saw CFG, as lead developer of the Etihad Campus, support OVG's feasibility studies and community consultations in advance of September 2020 planning approval.

Tim Leiweke, Co-Founder and CEO, OVG, commented: "We are thrilled that CFG has chosen to invest in Co-op Live, and we can't think of a better partner for this project. We are creating one of the world's best arenas in Manchester. This venue will push the boundaries of live entertainment and be a significant source of opportunity for the city. We also know that this is precisely the right time to make such a substantial financial investment in Manchester, helping it build back from the terrible impact of COVID-19.

"The Etihad Campus was always a clear choice due to its proximity to the city centre and the opportunity to be part of a growing visitor destination with excellent existing transport links. With CFG as a JV partner, we can push the boundaries on how Co-op Live delivers for artists, every single fan, the UK's music industry and the city by creating a magical intersection of sports, community and entertainment that will be the envy of the world.”

Marty Edelman, Board Director at City Football Group, commented: "Co-op Live unlocks the potential for the Etihad Campus to grow as an entertainment destination that creates more reasons for the nation and world to visit Manchester.

 "The Chairman and the Board's priority has always been to ensure Co-op Live seamlessly integrates with the Campus and compliments Manchester's city centre offer. As a joint venture partner and investor, we will ensure the Co-op Live becomes part of the fabric of East Manchester and delivers the fullest community and economic impact as Manchester, and the wider region builds back from COVID."

Since 2008, CFG has overseen over £700m of public investment into the Etihad Campus and East Manchester, supporting approximately 14,000 jobs. Co-op Live is now in the main construction phase, with £150m of orders already placed with local firms. The project is supporting 3,350 jobs during construction and a further 1,000 once the venue opens. Co-op Live has already made substantial commitments to the city and its residents through local opportunities, a commitment to the Manchester Living Wage and improvements in transport and local infrastructure. This includes a new controlled parking zone to protect resident parking, an additional 240 covered cycle spaces, improved walking routes into the city centre and green spaces to enhance the area on event and non-event days for locals, visitors and wildlife.


Ben Tipple, Co-op Live -


Oak View Group (OVG), City Football Group (CFG), Harry Styles, and Co-op are joining forces to create Co-op Live, the biggest and best arena in the UK. Based in Manchester, the project is injecting £365m of private investment into the North West.

Co-op Live will be one of the world’s premier music and entertainment venues, rivalling New York’s Madison Square Garden, The Forum in LA and The O2 in London. World class, planet friendly and at the heart of the local community, Co-op Live will deliver one of the world’s most pioneering, sustainable, and socially responsible venues, delivering Co-op’s vision of a fairer world into the entertainment industry. The project will create 3,350 constructions jobs and 1,000 roles and apprenticeships on completion of the venue as well as giving over £1m back to national and local good causes.

Co-op Live will be located on the Etihad Campus, and will host live music, sport, comedy, award shows and family entertainment. Co-op Live’s smart ‘bowl’ design means it is big but intimate with cutting edge visual technology, incredible acoustics and 32 bars, restaurants, lounges and club spaces.

The construction project, the single-largest in the city, will give the regional economy a much-needed boost following the devastating impacts of the Covid pandemic and will boost the local economy by over £1.5bn over the next 20 years. From locally sourced construction materials to zero waste to landfill, solar panels and rainwater harvesting, Co-op Live will be doing more to use less and leave better.


Oak View Group (OVG) is a global sports and entertainment company founded by Tim Leiweke and Irving Azoff in 2015. OVG is focused on being a positive disruption to business as usual in the sports and live entertainment industry and currently has eight divisions across global offices (Los Angeles, New York, Seattle, Philadelphia, and London).