Business News Legal Live Business

Canada’s Pemberton Music Festival goes into bankruptcy

By | Published on Monday 22 May 2017

Pemberton Music Festival

Canada’s Pemberton Music Festival, due to take place in July, has gone under, with poor ticket sales and currency fluctuations being partly blamed. Ticketholders are being told that they will have to join the queue of unsecured creditors if they want to try to get a refund.

A statement on the festival’s website states that “the 2017 Pemberton Music Festival scheduled for July 13-16, 2017 is cancelled and will not proceed as scheduled. The trustee will issue formal notice of the bankruptcy proceeding to all known creditors of PMF within five days of its appointment”.

The ‘trustee’ in the bankruptcy is Ernst & Young Inc. The statement continues with a message for those who had bought tickets for this year’s event, saying that: “Unfortunately there are no automatic refunds from PMF. As PMF is now in bankruptcy, it has no ability to provide refunds for tickets purchased. However ticketholders may file a proof of claim form as an unsecured creditor with EYI in accordance with the claims process”.

The trustees add that ticketholders may have some protection from their bank or credit card companies that would then provide a refund, though in Canada that depends on the policies of the individual finance firms. “Refunds may be available to ticketholders from third parties if tickets were purchased using a credit card”, it says. “As each bank and credit card issuer have their own specific policies, ticketholders are to contact their bank or credit card issuer directly to determine whether a refund can be obtained”.

Pandora’s Ticketfly handled ticketing for the event. It said in a post on Facebook: “We have just been informed that Pemberton Music Festival has been cancelled. We are in communication with the event organisers and the bankruptcy trustee. We understand that ticket buyers want to see this issue resolved as soon as possible. We will report back when we have more information”.

The Pemberton Music Festival has been promoted by US-based Huka Entertainment since 2014, the event in part inspired by the one-off Pemberton Festival staged by Live Nation in the same location in 2008. However, Huka Entertainment itself is still in business, the festival having actually been owned by the owner of the site where it took place, who was seemingly behind the decision to put the operation into bankruptcy.

Huka Entertainment said in a statement: “For the past four years Huka Entertainment has worked to create a one-of-a-kind experience in the most beautiful place on earth. We are heartbroken to see the 2017 Pemberton Music Festival cancelled. As a contract producer, Huka did not make the decision to cancel the Festival. That decision was made by the Pemberton Music Festival, LP. We are extremely disappointed for our fans, artists and all of our partners who have supported the festival over the years”.