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Live Nation announces earnings

Concert giant also acquiring dance promoter Cream Holdings

Live Nation Entertainment’s revenue and net losses grew in its first fiscal quarter ended March 31, the company reported Wednesday.

Broadening its commitment to the booming dance market, LNE also announced Wednesday it was acquiring Cream Holdings, a major U.K.-based promoter of electronic music events.

LNE’s revenues grew to $867 million in Q1, over $849 million in the same quarter last year.

Operating losses dropped to $42.8 million from $72.1 million in last year’s quarter. However, the company’s net loss soared to $69.1 million from $48.4 million in 2011’s Q1.

In the year’s first three months – typically a soft period for the concert business – concert ticket sales slipped to 16.7 million, from 17 million in the first quarter of 2011.

LNE president-CEO Michael Rapino beat the drum for the dance business during the firm’s earnings call, and the company’s faith in that market was reflected in its purchase of international player Cream Holdings.

Founded in Liverpool, Cream has mounted the Creamfields Music Festival in the U.K. since the late ’90s, and has expanded the fest into Australia and other world markets. The company anticipates attendance of 100,000 at this year’s U.K. Creamfields, to be mounted in August in Northern England.

Cream founder-CEO James Barton will join LNE as president of its Live Nation Electronic Music division.

Rapino said in a statement, “We intend to launch new festivals in key markets in North America, Europe and Southeast Asia.”

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