Clayman part of package

NEW YORK — Fast-growing SFX Entertainment is launching into the European market, announcing Tuesday that it plans to acquire the U.K.’s Apollo Leisure Group in a deal worth $254 million.

Apollo operates three arenas in the U.K. and Ireland and owns or operates 23 theaters, including the Apollo Victoria Theater, the Lyceum Theater and the London Apollo Hammersmith Theater, all in London. Company will open Disney’s “The Lion King” at the Lyceum in September. Apollo also owns Tickets Direct, a system that handled some 6 million ducats in 1998.

Clayman included

As part of the transaction, it will acquire the Barry Clayman Corp., which is 50% owned by Apollo shareholders and promotes concerts and entertainment events in the U.K. and throughout Europe.

Apollo is “a great entry point for us into the European market,” said SFX chairman and CEO Robert Sillerman.

SFX said it will pay in loan notes and stock.

Separately, SFX filed with the SEC to sell 7.5 million shares of common stock.

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