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Forest National joins Brussels’ Sportaleis Group

Erica Basnicki 19 September 2013
Forest National joins Brussels’ Sportaleis Group

As of 1 October, the Sportpaleis Group will enter the management of Vorst Nationaal (Forest National), the famous Brussels ‘temple of rock’ built in 1971. Music Hall will retain ownership of the venue but the Sportpaleis Group will handle the day-to-day management. The two parties signed a framework agreement for the collaboration.   The collaboration aims to strengthen both organisations in their core business and allow them to continue to develop and become even more successful. The Sportpaleis Group now comprises the Antwerp Sportpaleis itself, Lotto Arena, Ethias Arena and now the 8,000 capacity Forest National.
  "Forest National is well loved by the world’s leading artists: it is by far one of the most charming concert halls in Europe. Our entire team is looking forward to working together with the staff of Forest National in order to reinforce its (inter)national position,” said Jan Van Esbroeck, CEO of the Sportpaleis Group.   “We have worked for 20 years to get Forest National to where it is today. I am sure that the Sportpaleis Group is the right partner to take the venue into the future,” echoed Geert Allaert, managing director of Music Hall.   In other venue news, Paleis 12 opened at the Heysel event site on Friday 13 September, co-financed by the Brussels Expo group and the city of Brussels.   One of the Heysel exhibition halls built in 1989, Paleis 12 has been completely refurbished to host concerts, sports events and congress sessions. With a capacity of 18,000 standing, the venue sits between the Forest National and Sportpaleis (23,000 capacity) in terms of size.   Paleis 12 marks the first step in the NEO-project, aiming at a total make-over of the Heysel exposition park.   Story: Marc Maes

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