The latest industry news to your inbox.

I'd like to hear about marketing opportunities


I accept IQ Magazine's Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy


CTS Eventim achieves “almost balanced” EBITDA

The German live entertainment powerhouse cites stringent cost-cutting for a modest €2.7m loss, despite a 97% drop in revenue

By IQ on 20 Aug 2020

Klaus-Peter Schulenberg, CEO of CTS Eventim

Klaus-Peter Schulenberg, CTS Eventim

In the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, CTS Eventim has achieved an “almost balanced” EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation), according to the company’s half-year earnings report.

The German entertainment conglomerate, which owns promoters including Barracuda and FKP Scorpio, has managed to cap its losses in the first half of 2020 to €2.7 million, thanks to “rigorous measures to minimise costs and boost efficiency”.

In the second quarter of 2020, its group revenue was 96.6 percent lower year-on-year, at €13.9m – almost on par with Live Nation’s 98% drop in revenue in Q2 – bringing the normalised EBITDA figure in at -€16.2 million.

However, the company says it implemented cost-cutting measures which saved the group a double-digit million Euro figure. These measures included reducing investments to a minimum and working on the implementation of promoter voucher schemes, in key European markets such as Germany, Austria and Italy, to ensure that liquidity remains safeguarded.

Klaus-Peter Schulenberg, CEO of CTS Eventim says: “Even though we are currently experiencing the most difficult phase ever in our corporate history as a result of the corona pandemic, we are looking confidently to the future. Crises are above all an opportunity for a company to show its strengths.”

“Crises are above all an opportunity for a company to show its strengths”

“Thanks to prudent management in the past, to the solid cash flow situation we have as a result, to rigorous cost-cutting and efficiency-boosting measures, to our forward-looking technologies and thanks, last but not least, to our highly motivated employees, we are also well placed to face such a difficult market environment as it is at present. We will emerge from the crisis stronger and more agile,” he says.

Ticketing revenue in the first six months of the year fell by 55.8% to €88.4m compared to the first half of 2019. In the second quarter of 2020, revenue fell 90.2% from €95.8m to €9.4m. In the live entertainment sector, revenue fell in the first half of the year by 77.2% to €114.9m and in the second quarter of 2020, revenue fell 98.0% from €322.3m to €6.3m.

At the beginning of 2020, CTS grew its live entertainment business internationally even further by acquiring majority shareholdings in Gadget Entertainment AG and wepromote Entertainment Group Switzerland AG, completing a majority stake in the Barracuda Group in Austria and by entering a new joint venture with Michael Cohl, the renowned US promoter.

“It’s a hopeful sign that events with several hundred visitors are now taking place again,” says Schulenberg. “Our LANXESS arena in Cologne was a forerunner in that respect, and concerts with a total capacity of up to 5,000 people are planned as tests for this coming September in our Waldbühne arena in Berlin, with an appropriate hygiene concept. We know that enthusiasm for live events is unbroken, despite corona.”

According to a recent survey of its customers, 75% of the respondents want to go to live events again within four months of the corona restrictions being lifted.


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.