Left to right: John Collins – CEO of On Location Experiences, Gerry Cardinale of RedBird Capital Partners, Jon Bon Jovi, George Pyne of Bruin Sports Capital at RedBird Capital’s NYC office
On Location Experiences (previously NFL On Location), a premium experiential hospitality business jointly owned by RedBird Capital Partners, Bruin Sports Capital and the National Football League, today announced a creative partnership and strategic investment with world-renowned music and entertainment icon Jon Bon Jovi (“Bon Jovi”). As part of Bon Jovi’s strategic investment, On Location Experiences has acquired Runaway Tours, the VIP hospitality business for premier music acts created by Bon Jovi. Runaway Tours will become a new vertical for On Location Experiences to expand into the music and entertainment industry.
In April 2015, RedBird Capital Partners and Bruin Sports Capital assumed operational control of On Location Experiences as a standalone business in partnership with 32 Equity, the entity that oversees the NFL’s private equity efforts. As part of this deal, Bon Jovi will become an equity holder in On Location Experiences and will join its board of directors. Terms of the investment were not disclosed.
“This is an exciting day for Runaway Tours and for me personally,” said Jon Bon Jovi. “I have a longstanding relationship with the NFL and with Gerry Cardinale, and becoming a part of On Location Experiences is a unique opportunity for me to combine my passion for football and my love of music and entertainment to provide fan experiences worthy of the rights holders that will be our partners. On Location Experiences’ partnership with the 32 NFL owners and with me sets the foundation for similar global partnerships going forward across sports and entertainment.”
“Our partnership with the NFL is predicated on the expansion of the On Location platform to include other global iconic rights holders in sports and entertainment. I can’t think of a better example of fulfilling this mandate than welcoming Jon Bon Jovi as our partner and co-investor in the business,” said Gerry Cardinale, Managing Partner and Founder of RedBird Capital Partners. “When you look at the span of Jon’s career over the last thirty years across music, sports and philanthropy, you will find a very unique entrepreneur who knows how to build businesses that deliver high touch, live event experiences to fans across sports and entertainment. Jon is a friend but he is also a business builder that we can learn from as we look to expand the On Location Experiences platform.”
“Jon’s ability to consistently and creatively deliver transcendent experiences to fans worldwide directly aligns with our vision for On Location Experiences,” said George Pyne, CEO of Bruin Sports Capital. “In Jon, we have found a partner whose passion, talent, strategic mind, innovative approach and iconic brand within the music and entertainment industry will enable us to create a global, one-of-a-kind, fan-focused premier experience business.”
“Jon Bon Jovi’s interest in joining this initiative speaks volumes about the On Location platform,” said Eric Grubman, Executive Vice President, Business Ventures, at the National Football League. “On Location represents the intersection of business and entertainment. Jon Bon Jovi is a person who has world class talents in both areas, and we could not be more pleased to welcome him as a partner.”
“I am thrilled that Jon Bon Jovi is joining our team at On Location Experiences and am excited to work closely with one of the most talented, fan-centered icons in the music and entertainment industry. Runaway Tours is an established and recognized brand for VIP hospitality, and this partnership will add new opportunities and capabilities to the premium events On Location Experiences can offer.” said John Collins, CEO of On Location Experiences.
Runaway Tours is dedicated to creating once-in-a-lifetime, travel experiences for fans that cultivate unique community building. The Company offers exclusive, unforgettable vacation packages available nowhere else, which includes hosting customers in luxurious hotels, private receptions and cocktail hours, great tickets to concerts and/or exclusive performances, members-only parties, and the opportunity to meet your favorite performer. As part of On Location Experiences, Runaway Tours will immediately provide the business with the operational expertise, production capabilities, logistical support and industry connections needed to efficiently and effectively expand in the music and entertainment VIP events business.