Powered by big summer concert tours from U2, Guns N’ Roses and others, Live Nation posted its best third-quarter numbers to date. “All of our businesses — concerts, advertising and ticketing — have delivered growth for the nine months, and based on their key operating metrics, we currently expect each to deliver record revenue, operating income and [adjusted operating income] for the full year,” said chairman Michael Rapino in a statement.
Looking at financials, its revenue was up 12% to $3.6 billion in the quarter, which ended Sept. 30 and includes a hot summer season. Operating income was up 5% for the quarter to $201 million. For the first nine months of 2017, concerts have brought in $6.07 billion, a 19% jump over 2016 and ticketing is up 16% to $1.52 billion. Adjusted operating income is up 10% for the quarter, to $335 Million
The company has sold more than 80 million concert tickets through October, up 20% year-on-year, at 20,000 shows in 40 countries, with more than 14,000 in North America. Ticketmaster 14% growth for the nine months in global fee-bearing gross transaction value.
Its festival sponsorship revenue shows a 20% bump, with over 8 million fans attending 95 festivals across the globe.
The company’s Ticketmaster division showed 14% growth for the nine months in global fee-bearing gross transaction value, and is projected to deliver nearly 500 million tickets worth approximately $28 billion in 29 countries this year. Its Verified Fan program, designed to battle bots and rolled out in earnest with Bruce Springsteen’s Broadway run and U2’s forthcoming 2018 tour, has seen a 90% reduction in the number of tickets ending up on the secondary market, the company claims.
“As a result,” Michael Rapino said, “by the end of this year I expect we will deliver 3 million tickets to Verified Fans, saving them $100 million dollars relative to buying on secondary sites after bots got the tickets first.”