Agents talk: Two giants explore merger

Agents talk: Two giants explore merger


norman lebrecht

August 21, 2015

We hear that IMG Artists co-owner Alexander Shustorovich has been going around the festival circuit saying that he’s negotiating to buy CAMI.

IMGA and CAMI are the world’s two largest classical agencies.

This may be happy-hour talk, or it may be Russian bluff. But CAMI is ripe for the plucking now that Ronald Wilford is no more and Jean-Jacques Cesbron has hived off  the commercial bits into a separate company, CAMIMusic.

Whether fraudster-co-owned IMG is a fit and proper proprietor for CAMI, and whether any such deal would pass US anti-trust laws, is another matter altogether. But a deal is in the air. Don’t say you haven’t been warned.


img owners

Wissman (l), Shustorovich (r), rich pal inbetween


  • PDQ.BACH says:

    IMG pwning CAMI? OMG!

    They should heed Jacques-Yves Cousteau’s example: he dubbed his film production society Les requins associés, Sharks Associated.
    An appropriate branding for CAMIMG.

    What about a new corporate logo in the vein of “Jackals and Crocodiles” (familiarly shortened to “Jacs ‘n’ Crocs”) ?

  • Ivan says:

    I sincerely doubt that the Federal Trade Commission will care about a CAMI/IMGA purchase or merger. The combined turnover and profits of these entities are minuscule and their combined market share is now negligible in what is a contracting business in any case. I don’t believe anything as been hived off. I would guess that the majority of any LLC there is owned by the parent company CAMI, Inc. As for the rest, it probably lives on extremely small margins, aging senior management and disproportionately high overhead. With the absence of Mr. Wilford, an owner who not only understood all of the businesses thoroughly but was also willing to provide considerable and regular liquidity, a sale is inevitable and maybe highly sought after by his heirs.

  • Alvaro says:

    Antitrust?? Jaja! What you think this is, Exxon Mobil and Shell? Microsoft and Apple? Lets be real…

  • Former IMG Artist says:

    Strange, if you ask me, since they got rid of so many artists and managers at IMG, after a HUGE exodus of all their most valuable managers over a span of about 4 years. Who the heck is left? I guess they’d have to poach at CAMI to have some senior management who actually knows what they’re doing!