The Power of Passion

For Jean-Luc Lagardère, sport and the powerful emotions it inspires were things that made life worth living. An enthusiastic horse breeder, he bought his first Thoroughbred in 1966 – his horse Sagamix went on to win the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe in 1998. Before long, he founded Matra Sports, the racing division of his Matra Car company, selecting a stable of drivers that won the Formula One championship in 1969, along with victories at Le Mans in 1972, 1973 and 1974.

 

His goals in motor racing accomplished, Lagardère sought a new challenge. In 1982, he set out to transform the venerable Paris-based Racing Club de France from a Third Division team to a European super-club. He bought the club and took over as chairman, launching an ambitious policy of high-profile transfers that propelled his team to the first division in 1984 and took it to the final of the French Cup in 1989.

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All in the Family

In time, Jean-Luc Lagardère’s son Arnaud took up the sporting baton. A keen fan of motor racing, football and tennis, he set his sights on a fresh challenge: building on his family’s historic links with sport to harness new opportunities for growth. His first move was setting up Team Lagardère, a professional training structure active in tennis and athletics.

His second changed the game entirely. The acquisition of Sportfive in 2006 marked the birth of the Lagardère group’s dedicated sports division. Consolidated by a series of strategic acquisitions – IEC in Sports in Sweden, Upsolut in Germany, World Sport Group in Asia, and Best and Gaylord in the United States – it has successfully evolved into a worldwide agency offering a full spectrum of sports business services. It also owns stakes in exclusive sport resorts such as the Racing Club de Paris and Florida’s Saddlebrook Resort.

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The Next Level and Beyond

In 2011, Arnaud Lagardère strengthened the new entity’s commitment to creating powerful collective experiences by adding venue management and live entertainment to the mix. The live entertainment branch acquired operating concessions for such iconic Parisian venues as Les Folies Bergères and the Casino de Paris and launched a string of successful productions and tours by leading artists.

 

Today, a fresh chapter begins. Lagardère Sports and Entertainment, brings a resolutely integrated approach to its twin fields of activity. A single company with a common culture, it is firmly focused on the future and the innovative solutions it has to offer. Yet its most precious assets remain the same as ever. Passion. Excitement. Emotion.

We are Lagardère Sports and Entertainment.

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