The Detroit Electronic Music Festival has for the first time turned a small profit, drawing an audience of 45,323 punters, 4,000 more than the first ticketed festival in 2005.
Attendance was “between 15,000 and 18,000 the first and second days,” said Shannon McCarthy, a spokesperson for Paxahau. “We’re very pleased with how the weekend went,” McCarthy added. “It was really seamless; everything went very smooth, operationally.”
The DEMF was founded in 2000 by Detroit techno artists Derrick May and Carl Craig. Modeled on European counterparts, the annual event was first conceived as a free festival, but suffered from years of management issues, name changes, and financial losses.
Fuse-In promoter and techno artist Kevin Saunderson first begin charging admission to main festival location Hart Plaza in 2005 but failed to turn a profit. This year Detroit-based electronic record label and booking agency Paxahau stepped in, raising three-day ticket prices from $25 to $40 and daily passes by similar margin.
This year’s DEMF also received corporate sponsorship from DaimlerChrysler brands Jeep and Dodge.
Paxahau spokeswoman Shannon McCarthy characterized the profit as "a seed investment to go forward in 2007,” according to the Detroit Free Press.