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Live Nation Q2 results: shares soar $10 in six months

Live Nation Entertainment revenues reached $2.82bn in the second quarter of 2017, with CEO Michael Rapino predicting another year of double-digit growth

By Jon Chapple on 10 Aug 2017

Michael Rapino, Live Nation Entertainment

image © Rainer Hosch/Live Nation

Shares in Live Nation Entertainment have topped the US$40 mark for the first time, as the live entertainment giant posted strong quarterly results for the second quarter (Q2) of 2017.

Live Nation’s concerts business was in Q2 once again its earnings “flywheel”, president and CEO Michael Rapino told investors yesterday, with a record 7,000+ shows and ticket sales of 24 million – up 5.5m year on year – driving concert revenue of US$2.25 billion, a 34% increase on Q2 2016. Adjusted operating income (which measures income before acquisition and stock expenses, depreciation and loss/gains incurred from the disposal of assets) from concerts grew 51%, to $88 million.

There were also solid gains in sponsorship and advertising, with revenue up 31% and AOI up 21%, and Ticketmaster, which grew turnover 9% to $484.6m and gross transaction value (GTV) by 8%.

Rapino (pictured) noted that ticketing growth was, however, negatively “impacted by the shift in concert onsales to the first quarter” but said Ticketmaster is seeing great success from its new Verified Fan presale system, which has seen a “dramatic reduction in these tickets then being sold on secondary sites” – and the continued blurring of the lines between primary and secondary market tickets.

“2017 is on track to be another year of growth and record results for the company”

“Our success at Ticketmaster starts with providing fans with the best solution to their ticketing needs,” he explained. “Building on our integration of primary and secondary tickets, we have now expanded our listings to also include secondary tickets to shows for which Ticketmaster is not the primary ticketer, all purchased through the same checkout flow. This has now increased the number of events we have listed by 35%, further leveraging the 120 million fans visiting our online sites per month.”

Total revenue for the entire Live Nation group in Q2 grew 29%, to $2.82bn. AOI was $221.4m.

Live Nation stocks jumped 5.6% following the earnings calls, pushing the share price above $40 for the first time – just six months after they passed the $30 mark.

Record Live Nation turnover for 6th year running

At the close of the New York Stock Exchange last night, a single share in Live Nation Entertainment cost $40.25.

Commenting on Q2’s results, Rapino concluded: “2017 is on track to be another year of growth and record results for the company. Our key indicators for our businesses – concert tickets sold for shows this year, contracted sponsorship and fee-bearing ticketing GTV – are all pacing double digits ahead of last year and as a result we expect each of our businesses to deliver record revenue, operating income and AOI this year.”


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