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Japanese live business reaches record high in 2017

After 2016's unwelcome dual arena closures, Japan's live entertainment industry recorded its best-ever year in 2017, provisional figures suggest

By Jon Chapple on 26 Jun 2018

A Japanese fan flies the flag at Tomorrowland 2013

A Japanese fan flies the flag at Tomorrowland 2013

The value of the Japanese live market hit a record high in 2017, according to preliminary figures from the latest edition of the annual Live Entertainment White Paper.

While the market shrunk slightly in 2016 – down 2% year on year, to ¥501.5 billion (US$4.56bn), largely owing to a shortage of available large venues –  the live business recovered 2.5% last year to reach a record high of ¥513.8bn (US$4.67bn) reveals the provisional Live Entertainment White Paper 2018.

According to the 13 companies and associations that compile the report – collectively the ‘Live Entertainment Investigation Committee’, and including the All-Japan Concert and Live Entertainment Promoters Conference (ACPC), Japan Association of Music Enterprises (JAME) and Ticket Pia – the recovery was largely attributable to the reopening of two arenas, Saitama Super Arena (37,000-cap.) and Yokohama Arena (17,000-cap.), both of which were closed for renovation through much of 2017. (Pia itself announced in mid-2017 it is building its own arena in order combat the venue shortage.)

However, smaller venues also fared well, with venues under 10,000 capacity reporting an increase in the number of performances compared to 2016.

Courtesy of Ticket Pia, a graph shows the growth of the live entertainment business since 2007 (pink is live music):

Japanese Live Entertainment White Paper 2018
The full report, with detailed analysis, will be released in September.


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