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Quebec Government Providing $200M Loan to Cirque du Soleil to Keep it in Business During Pandemic

The Quebec government has announced that it’ll provide a $200 million loan to Cirque du Soleil.

In making the announcement, Quebec Economy Minister Pierre Fitzgibbon also said that if the current owners decide to sell the iconic circus producer, the loan deal includes an option that allows the provincial government to buy it to ensure that it remains under Quebec ownership.

“The Cirque has a need for financial aid to allow it to be relaunched.. The current shareholders have a plan to relaunch the Cirque and they came to see us. We said, ‘Yes, we’re going to help you but here are the conditions,’” the minister said. “The most important thing is we are relaunching the Cirque with Quebecers in positions of power, with the intellectual property here. … The Cirque is too important for Quebec to let it be bought by a foreign company that will then move the head office out of Quebec.”

Currently Cirque du Soleil is majority controlled U.S. investment firm TPG Capital. According to the Montreal Gazette, the three main shareholders are TPG Capital, China’s Fosun Capital Group, and the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec. Recently, the three companies provided Cirque an emergency injection of US$50 million to keep it going during the pandemic shutdowns of live events.

For more information, read the Montreal Gazette’s report here: https://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/quebec-government-gives-200-million-to-cirque-might-buy-in/

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Michael Raine is the Senior Editor at Canadian Musician, Canadian Music Trade, Professional Sound, and Professional Lighting & Production magazines. He also co-hosts the Canadian Musician Podcast.
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