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"I have put my heart, soul and indeed my entire professional business life into Metropolitan. I believe we have developed a solid, multi-faceted entertainment company that has a very bright future."
——John Scher
SCHER OUT IN MEG SHAKE-UP
Veteran Concert Promoter Ousted From Company, Which Is Set To Be Acquired by Clear Channel
His long, strange trip has hit a temporary cul de sac.

Concert promotion veteran John Scher has resigned as President/CEO of Metropolitan Entertainment Group, the company he founded 30 years ago. His replacement is Covanta Energy Corp. CEO Scott Mackin. Covanta is the new name for Ogden Corporation, which has been the largest holder of MEG stock since it purchased a 50% stake in the company in the late '90s. The company is now expected to be sold to Clear Channel Entertainment.

Scher, who holds a 40% stake in Metropolitan, will remain with the company on the Board of Directors and will continue as President of Hybrid Recordings record label, which has acts like Guster and just released the soundtrack to the movie, "Hedwig and the Angry Inch."

Said Scher: "I have put my heart, soul and indeed my entire professional business life into Metropolitan. I believe we have developed a solid, multi-faceted entertainment company that has a very bright future. Scott Mackin and the Covanta team want to work with the Metropolitan staff to ensure that we meet our fullest potential."

Scher had previously tried to find a partner to help fund a buy-out of Ogden, but a prospective deal with the House of Blues fell through when the company couldn't come up with enough funds to complete the acquisition.

Commented Mackin: "All of us at Covanta and MEG value what John has meant, and will continue to mean, for MEG. A true visionary, John is a legend in the entertainment industry. Moreover, we are excited about the tremendous potential that Metropolitan has for growth and continued success. But I refuse to keep spending $10 on bottled water."

MEG's five divisions, which include live entertainment, touring, artist management, the Hybrid label and theatrical and TV properties, will remain intact.

The N.Y. Daily News reports that Scher's ouster was hastened by his opposition to Clear Channel's offer to buy the company. Clear Channel, whose deal to purchase Philip Anschutz and Irv Azoff's Concerts West recently went south, may well have to convince the government there are no antitrust issues in its purchase of Metropolitan.

The 50-year vet Scher started promoting in New Jersey as a college student and by the early '70s was running his own Monarch Entertainment, forming a rivalry with fellow New York area promoter Ron Delsener. Scher's clients included the Grateful Dead. As Monarch turned into Metropolitan in the late '80s, Scher expanded beyond rock concerts and began promoting events like Woodstock '94 and several Broadway shows, in partnership with PolyGram Diversified Entertainment, where he worked in the mid-'90s.

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