Hard Rock | March 2007

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Posted on March 28, 2007 | Tags:
Hard Rock International Offers Fans the Chance To Travel the Globe with Ambassadors of Rock
Orlando, Fla., March 28, 2007 – Hard Rock International is proud to announce additional acts for one of the U.K.’s most-anticipated concert events and the kick-off to Hard Rock’s 2007 Ambassadors of Rock Tour. Legendary rockers Peter Gabriel and Crowded House will join previously announced Aerosmith as the joint-headliners of Hard Rock Presents Hyde Park Calling 2007 in June – the first stop of Hard Rock’s second annual Ambassadors of Rock Tour, a global concert series featuring top artists and bands, benefiting charities worldwide.

Hard Rock Presents Hyde Park Calling 2007 will be held on Saturday, June 23rd and Sunday, June 24th, 2007, and will feature two stages and more than a dozen artists. Saturday’s show will feature joint-headliners – Peter Gabriel and recently reunited Crowded House. On Sunday, timeless rock legend Aerosmith, in the midst of the band’s first European tour in more than eight years, will take the stage as the headlining act.

“Hard Rock is once again thrilled to be the presenting partner for Hyde Park Calling, and we are delighted to announce that three of the world’s greatest rock acts – Aerosmith, Peter Gabriel and Crowded House – will be our headlining performers,” said Sean Dee, Chief Marketing Officer, Hard Rock International. “For the second year, Ambassadors of Rock will bring together Hard Rock Cafes, Live venues, Hotels and Casinos around the globe to help spread the universal language of rock, and also give raving Hard Rock fans the opportunity to travel the globe and live like rock stars, attending some of these star-studded events.”

Pack Your Bags and Get A Passport!
As part of the global celebration, one lucky consumer and his/her guest will have the chance to live the life of a rock star, traveling the world to Hard Rock’s Ambassadors of Rock concerts. Last year, grand-prize winner Alison Swengel from Altamonte Springs, Fla. logged thousands of frequent flyer miles taking in several shows around the world. Consumers worldwide can enter the sweepstakes to win the ultimate rock road trip via HardRock.com.

Hard Rock Presents Hyde Park Calling
Hard Rock Presents Hyde Park Calling, a two-day festival being held on June 23rd and 24th, will be one of London’s premier music events, with more than a dozen top bands performing on two stages, including performances by U.K. chart toppers The Feeling and Ghosts on Saturday. Taking the stage on Sunday will be Chris Cornell, best known as the front-man for the bands Soundgarden and Audioslave, along with popular rockers Jet and The Answer. Additional artists will be announced and tickets for the festival are available at www.hydeparkcalling.co.uk

In addition to renowned bands and an on-site Hard Rock Cafe, the festival will include a market area, performance art, a healing area and a “chill out” zone.

Ambassadors of Rock 2007
In addition to the kick-off event in London, the Ambassadors of Rock Tour will include shows featuring top artists in Dubai; New York; Chicago; Las Vegas; Hollywood, Florida; Mexico City; Caracas; Buenos Aires; Singapore; Tokyo; and Osaka; as well as stops around the world at various Hard Rock Cafe locations. For updated concert details and additional events, visit HardRock.com.

Philanthropy will also be an important part of Hard Rock’s global tour, as each Ambassadors of Rock event will benefit a local charity, with the London Hard Rock stop benefiting both the Nordoff-Robbins Foundation, a charitable organization that helps to provide music therapy to autistic children, and Global Angels, a children’s charity that acts as an umbrella fundraising mechanism for best-practice children’s projects throughout the world.

About Hard Rock International
With 123 high-energy Hard Rock Cafes and eight Hotels/Casinos (with two slated to open in 2007) in 46 countries, Hard Rock International is one of the world’s most globally recognized brands. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world’s greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning Web site. In addition to the two flagship Seminole Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos in Tampa and Hollywood, Fla., Hard Rock Hotels/Casinos are located in Las Vegas, Orlando, Chicago, Pattaya and Bali, with San Diego and Biloxi scheduled to open later in 2007. Additional hotel and casino projects have been announced in Palm Springs, Copper Mountain and Macau, scheduled to open in 2009. Hard Rock International, Inc. is owned by Seminole Hard Rock Entertainment, Inc. For more information on Hard Rock, visit www.hardrock.com.
Posted on March 02, 2007 | Tags:
Strong 2006 Results Mark Third Consecutive Year of Double-Digit Operating Profit Growth
Orlando, Fla., March 2, 2007 – Hard Rock International today announced its earnings for 2006 as part of a report issued by its current parent company, The Rank Group Plc (RNK.L).

Hard Rock’s total revenues for the year, which consisted of 53 weeks in company-owned cafe results, were $501.9 million, an increase of 10.9 percent compared to $452.6 million in 2005 (52 weeks). Operating profit increased 18.7 percent to $74.8 million in 2006 compared to $63.0 million in 2005. Hard Rock saw continued growth and improvement in all four business divisions comprising company-owned cafes, franchise cafes, hotels and casinos.

“Hard Rock International had an outstanding year in 2006, with growth in all divisions. This year’s performance marks the third consecutive year of growth, and we now look forward to a promising future,” said Hamish Dodds, president and CEO of Hard Rock International. “In 2006, we celebrated great success with a strong performance at our New York flagship location in the heart of Times Square. As we move into 2007, we have several exciting initiatives that will help drive our brand and business prospects including projects with international rockers The Edge, Shakira and Aerosmith. We also have two high-profile openings scheduled this year with the opening of Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Biloxi and Hard Rock Hotel San Diego.”

Company-Owned Cafe Performance
In the company-owned cafes, full year like-for-like sales on a 52-week basis were up 6.5 percent, driven by improved performances in both food and beverage and merchandise, as well as strong performances in Europe and North America, up 8.8 percent and 5.8 percent, respectively.

Profits from company-owned cafes for the full year 2006 increased 11.1 percent compared to full year in 2005. Hard Rock continued to focus on improved product offering, with premium ingredients, such as Certified Angus Beef burgers. In spring of 2006, Hard Rock Cafe also installed hardwood smokers in each company-owned cafe.

In merchandise, the company developed a targeted range of Hard Rock apparel and branded goods and continued to expand the product offerings to incorporate more fashion- and artist-inspired, branded logo apparel. In addition, Rock Shop offerings included a number of philanthropic items including a Breast Cancer Pin, supported by the Go-Go’s, and a new Signature Series T-shirt designed by Ozzy Osbourne, as well as continued sales of Signature Series T-shirts featuring designs from Bruce Springsteen and Eric Clapton. For the second consecutive year, on a 52-week to 52-week basis, the company has generated positive like-for-like merchandise sales with a growth of 5.6 percent.

Hard Rock also announced the move of Hard Rock Cafe Boston to a more strategic location in the highly trafficked Fanueil Hall area of Boston. The new location is slated to open in the summer of 2007.

Closures in the system in 2006 included the company-owned cafes in Austin and Los Angeles, and the Bristol Bar. Hard Rock will evaluate selectively closing additional under-performing locations during the balance of 2007.

Franchise Cafe Performance
Franchise royalties and fees earned on a calendar-year basis increased to $14.7 million in 2006 compared to $11.4 million in 2005. Success in the franchise units can be partially attributed to the cafes’ adoption of new standards and improvements in the menu and expansion of Rock Shops, both in the physical design of the merchandise stores and the selection of merchandise offered to guests.

Five new franchise cafes opened in 2006 in Santo Domingo, Mumbai, Narita, Ocho Rios and Margarita. In February 2007, Hard Rock Cafe Warsaw opened to become Poland’s first-ever Hard Rock location. Additional cafe growth is planned on the franchise side throughout the year, with projects in various stages of development.

Hotel and Casino Performance
Hotel and Casino income, earned on a calendar year basis, increased 23.3 percent from last year, with significant fees contributed by the two Hard Rock Hotel and Casinos operated by the Seminole Tribe of Florida which helped drive an improvement in operating profit for Hard Rock’s hotel and casino division. The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino brand continues to emerge as one of the world’s premiere hospitality and gaming brands.

In 2007, Hard Rock will complete the reconstruction of the 318-room Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Biloxi, Mississippi and open in the summer months. This property was in the middle of its opening program in September 2005 when it sustained major damage from Hurricane Katrina. In addition, the first Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego, California, featuring 417 rooms, is also scheduled to open in late 2007.

Hard Rock also recently announced the development of Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Macau in the City of Dreams Casino Entertainment and Resorts Complex on the Cotai Strip. The Hard Rock development will feature a state-of-the-art Hard Rock Casino, a 370-room Hard Rock Hotel with guest rooms and suites, a Hard Rock Cafe with designated live music area, a Rock Shop, VIP roof-top nightclub, stylish casual dining restaurant, stimulating health and fitness center, a variety of uniquely designed meeting spaces and an expansive pool and entertainment deck. This premier entertainment destination is set to open in late 2008, and paves the way for many more exciting leisure developments in Asia.

Other developments in progress include condo-hotel properties at the Copper Mountain Resort in Colorado, with 323 rooms, and Palm Springs, California, with 450 rooms. Construction on both these properties is expected to begin in 2007.

These new properties bring Hard Rock’s global estate of hotels in operation or development to a total of 11.

On December 7, 2006, the Seminole Tribe of Florida announced it had contracted to acquire Hard Rock International from the Rank Group Plc. The sale is expected to close on March 5, 2007. Both Seminole Tribe Chairman Mitchell Cypress and Seminole Gaming Chief Executive Officer James Allen stressed the Tribe’s plans to work with current Hard Rock International management to build on the existing growth plans and strategies for the company, which will continue to be headquartered in Orlando, Fla.

About Hard Rock International
With 124 high-energy Hard Rock Cafes, seven operating Hotel & Casinos and one stand-alone Casino in more than 46 countries, Hard Rock International is one of the world's most globally-recognized brands. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world's greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning Web site. Hard Rock International, Inc. is owned by The Rank Group Plc (RNK.L). For more information on Hard Rock, visit www.hardrock.com.
Posted on March 01, 2007 | Tags:
Proceeds Benefit Music Rising in Support of Gulf Coast Musicians
Orlando, Fla., March 1, 2007 – The month of March will be rockin’ as Hard Rock International hosts the “March on Stage” global emerging artist program! Beginning March 1st, and continuing throughout the month, Hard Rock Cafes in North America and Europe will present live concerts, featuring performances by some of today’s hottest emerging musicians and bands. Popular artists, including Rose Hill Drive, Toby Lightman, MiG, Marc Broussard, Julian Velard, Michael Glabicki, Citizen Cope, Teitur, Sons of William, Buckcherry, Ocean Colour Scene, The Pipettes and more, will rock out for fans at select Hard Rock Cafes throughout the month.

Committed to its “Love All, Serve All” creed, Hard Rock will donate proceeds from its “March on Stage” events in North America to Music Rising – a campaign founded by U2’s The Edge in 2005 to replace the lost instruments of the musicians affected by the hurricanes that devastated the Gulf Coast region. In addition, “March on Stage” events throughout Europe will benefit various charitable organizations.

Also, a limited-edition Music Rising T-shirt, designed by award winning designer William Cathcart and worn by The Edge for numerous performances, will be sold at Hard Rock locations around the world (and on hardrock.com) with proceeds from the sale of the shirt benefiting the charity. This striking T-shirt, worn by The Edge during U2’s performance at the 2006 Grammy Awards, features the winged Music Rising logo on a black background and has become a symbol of support for the many devastated by the hurricanes and those who continue to struggle.

To kick off the month-long charitable celebration, members of the Hard Rock family, including Hard Rock Cafe New Orleans and Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Biloxi, are teaming up with emerging recording artists to help rebuild the Gulf Coast region . . . one home at a time. In addition to giving rockin’ performances, Marc Broussard, Toby Lightman, MiG and Julian Velard, and Hard Rock representatives joined Habitat for Humanity to build homes in Musician’s Village in New Orleans.

“March on Stage” Concert Schedule:

March 1, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Denver - Rose Hill Drive, & John Alex Mason
Hard Rock Cafe New Orleans - Marc Broussard, Toby Lightman, MiG and Julian Velard

March 6, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Foxwoods - Michael Glabicki, MiG & Julian Velard

March 7, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Tahoe - Delta Nove

March 8, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Nashville - Toby Lightman & Teitur
Hard Rock Cafe New York - Citizen Cope, Michael Glabicki, MiG & Marc Broussard

March 9, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Memphis - Toby Lightman & Teitur

March 10, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Atlanta - Toby Lightman & Teitur

March 11, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe San Diego - Robert Randolph
Hard Rock Cafe Toronto - Michael Glabicki & Julian Velard

March 12, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Hollywood, Ca. - The Muddflaps
Hard Rock Cafe Atlanta - Taste of Chaos

March 13, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Pittsburgh - Michael Glabicki & MiG

March 15, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe La Jolla - Delta Nove

March 16, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Baltimore - Toby Lightman & Teitur
Hard Rock Cafe Chicago - Taste of Chaos

March 19, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Atlanta - Michael Glabicki, Julian Velard & MiG
Hard Rock Cafe San Diego - Shawn Colvin

March 20, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Myrtle Beach - Michael Glabicki & MiG

March 22, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Cleveland - Michael Glabicki, MiG & Julian Velard
Hard Rock Cafe Chicago - Maggie Speaks

March 23, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Chicago - Off Broadway, with special guest Cold Water Mystic

March 28, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Louisville - Toby Lightman

March 29, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Chicago - Elevation
Hard Rock Cafe Kona - Eek-A-Mouse
Hard Rock Cafe La Jolla - Alfred Howard and the K23 Orchestra

March 30, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Chicago - Simple Empty Soul with Exies and Autovain
Hard Rock Cafe Maui - Eek-A-Mouse
Hard Rock Cafe Toronto - Taste of Chaos

March 31, 2007
Hard Rock Cafe Honolulu - Eek-A-Mouse

For further information and full listings, please visit www.hardrock.com

Music Rising
Music Rising was formed in late 2005 by U2’s the Edge, legendary producer Bob Ezrin and Gibson Guitar Chairman and CEO Henry Juszkiewicz. Since its inception it has been recognized throughout the world and has aided more than 2,300 professional musicians. Many of the Gulf Region musicians who have depended on the local music industry for their livelihood have been supported by Music Rising through the replacement of lost instruments and equipment. Music Rising Phase II, a segment of the campaign dedicated to helping churches and schools of the Gulf Region by replacing their lost or destroyed instruments has helped numerous parishioners to date. Music Rising is administered by The Gibson Foundation. For more information on Music Rising, go to www.musicrising.org.. Rebuilding the Gulf Region “Note By Note” has become a symbolic tagline of the Music Rising campaign.

About Hard Rock International
With 124 high-energy Hard Rock Cafes, seven Hotel & Casinos and one stand-alone Casino in 46 countries, Hard Rock International is one of the world's most globally-recognized brands. Beginning with an Eric Clapton guitar, Hard Rock owns the world's greatest collection of music memorabilia, which is displayed at its locations around the globe. Hard Rock is also known for its collectible fashion and music-related merchandise, Hard Rock Live performance venues and an award-winning website. Hard Rock International, Inc. is owned by The Rank Group Plc (RNK.L). For more information on Hard Rock, visit www.hardrock.com.
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