O2 in £20m assault on music events

Mobile phone company O2 is to invest more than £20m in creating its own “spontaneous” music events and music sponsorships next year.

Mobile phone company O2 is to invest more than &£20m in creating its own “spontaneous” music events and music sponsorships next year.

The company has asked a shortlist of media agencies, music labels, sponsorship agencies and music rights-holders to pitch ideas for its 2005 music programme. O2 is keen to create its own events rather than simply badge music concerts and festivals.

O2 has asked the agencies to come up with ideas that will involve “apparently unplanned spontaneous events”, which will reflect the company’s positioning of “Music. Whenever. Wherever”.

The brief says “like a great piss-up, music is at its best when it’s spontaneous” and states that agencies should ensure that “everything we do has planned spontaneity at its heart”.

The brief gives examples such as an impromptu gig on top of a building, or a surprise headline act at a summer festival. The activity is scheduled to run between April and November next year, and will use interactive and mobile technology in the running of the music events.

O2 has already established close links with musical events, although sources say the company sees next year as a far more competitive market, with most major mobile networks developing music propositions. Last year, the company aimed its O2 Music sponsorship strategy at the youth market with more than 30 live concerts across existing events such as Party in the Park and Glastonbury.

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