Manchester’s brand new arena to be called Co-op Live

The Co-op have partnered with the Oak View Group to gain naming rights to the planned 23,500-capacity venue

Manchester’s planned new arena venue is set to go by the name Co-op Live.

The 23,500-capacity venue is the brainchild of the Oak View Group (OVG), who announced their plans last week following approval from the local council. Once completed, Co-op Live will be the UK’s largest indoor concert venue.

Set to be located on the Etihad Campus, the site of Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium in Eastlands, it is currently hoped that the venue will be ready to be opened in 2023. Construction work could begin on the project as early as November.

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OVG have partnered with the Manchester-based Co-operative Group for a 15-year deal which includes naming rights for the venue and benefits for Co-op members, such as pre-sale tickets and VIP experiences.

The deal also stipulates that around £1 million a year will be distributed by the Co-op Foundation to good causes across the UK, while Co-op Live is also being billed as “one of the most sustainable and socially responsible buildings of its type in Europe”.

“Co-op is set up with a clear goal to serve the interests of its members and invest for the long-term,” Steve Murrells, Group CEO of the Co-op, said. “The entertainment arena brings to life the co-operative difference and our vision to co-operate for a fairer world, from its sustainable construction, support for communities, zero food waste and member only exclusive benefits. It will not only enthral audiences, but every time people watch a live act they’ll be doing good in local communities across the UK.”

Tim Leiweke, Chief Executive Officer, Oak View Group, added: “We’re delighted with this partnership and join together with the Co-op team to build the new world-class arena that Manchester deserves. Our shared vision with Co-op is what makes this partnership so special.

“Our partnership goes way beyond a normal naming rights agreement. The shared values will help define the ethos of the venue, including bold commitments on sustainability and community. I’ve said from the beginning of this project that this arena will be of Manchester, for Manchester and by Manchester, and this partnership with one of the city’s most iconic brands is a critical part of that. We can’t wait to work together to bring amazing live event experiences, in one of the world’s best arenas, to Manchester.”

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Co-op Live is aiming to inject £350 million of private investment into the local area, with the construction aspect of the project set to create 3350 constructions jobs and 1000 roles and apprenticeships on completion of the venue.

It’s also hoped that the construction of Co-op Live will boost the local economy by over £1.5 billion over the next 20 years.

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