46 Million Tickets sold and Counting. Live Nation releases solid Q1 Financial Results

A special thank you to Michael Rapino and the entire Live Nation Entertainment team. When tickets are sold and touring is up, everyone makes money and the industry is healthy.

This year we have booked more shows, sold more tickets and have more sponsorship commitments than ever before at this point of the year. With the strength of these leading indicators, I am confident we will once again deliver record topline, operating income and AOI performance in each of our businesses in 2017.

The following text comes directly from the public Q1 Earnings Release.


May 4, 2017 – Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) today released financial results for the three months ended March 31, 2017.

Highlights (year-over-year):

  • Revenue Up 17% for the Quarter to $1.4 Billion
  • Operating Income Improves 36% for the Quarter to $(21) Million
  • Adjusted Operating Income Up 25% for the Quarter to $92 Million
  • Concert Ticket Sales for 2017 Shows of 46 Million, Up 25% through April Sponsorship & Advertising
  • Contracted Net Revenue Up Double Digits through April Ticketmaster Fee-Bearing GTV at Constant Currency Up 18% through First Quarter

Live Nation has continued growing its business in 2017, with first quarter revenue up 17%, operating income improvement of 36%, and adjusted operating income, or AOI, up 25%, with strong operating performance across all our concerts, advertising and ticketing segments.

This year we have booked more shows, sold more tickets and have more sponsorship commitments than ever before at this point of the year. With the strength of these leading indicators, I am confident we will once again deliver record topline, operating income and AOI performance in each of our businesses in 2017.

The global concerts industry is structurally growing, with strong tailwinds for both supply and demand. On the supply side, artists are touring now more than ever. And on the demand side, between the millennial shifting of spend to experiences and the globalization of artists on social media, we see continued long- term growth as fans attend more concerts.

Concerts Global Platform Growth

As of the end of April we have booked over 4,000 arena, stadium and amphitheater shows for 2017, up 10% over this point last year. As a result of our show pipeline, tickets sold through April for our concerts this year are up over 25% to 46 million tickets.

Along with this strong show and ticket count increase, we also expect to continue driving the profitability of our concerts business through increased onsite spending. This year we have invested to add more points of sale to improve throughput and increase sales, while also continuing to refine our product assortment and pricing.

Looking globally at the concerts business, we now promote shows in 40 countries as we continue reaching more fans in more markets. With all parts of our global concerts business looking strong this year, the concert segment continues to be the engine that powers the Live Nation flywheel strategy, growing the profitability of the concerts business while also driving our advertising and ticketing businesses.

Sponsorship & Advertising Delivered Continued Growth

We continue to see the tremendous attraction of our 70 million plus onsite fans for advertisers, driving continued double-digit growth in our advertising business. As of the end of April, we have commitments for over 80% of our planned advertising for the year, pacing double digits ahead of this point last year.

Our top clients that have over $1 million per year in advertising continue to increase their spend, accounting for over 75% of our total committed spend, and pacing up double digits through April.

We also see increased demand for concert video content. In addition to announcing Twitter as our latest partner in streaming live concerts, we have captured four concerts in virtual reality in partnerships with Hulu and NextVR, and last week we premiered the Live Nation-produced Puff Daddy documentary, “Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: The Bad Boy Story,” at the Tribeca Film Festival which will now be distributed by Apple. Collectively, this content provides us with an array of additional ad units and valuable marketing for our tours.

Ticketmaster Marketplace Growing

In the first quarter, Ticketmaster delivered its largest quarter in history for gross transaction value, or GTV, and ticket volume on a transacted basis. Our growth in the quarter came from both our fee-bearing primary and secondary businesses, which grew GTV by 18% and 20%, respectively.

Our success starts with continuing to build our venue client base, and in the first quarter we added 245 new clients, providing them with the most effective software platform for their ticketing needs.

On the commerce side, we begin by attracting more fans to our sites, and in the quarter we increased online visits by 10% year-on-year, and grew our installed app base by 41% to over 33 million. And then once the fans are at our sites or app, our investments to improve the fan experience and purchase flow have driven higher conversion rates, increasing our sales.

While growing ticket sales on our sites, we have also been deploying APIs to extend our distribution. As a result, in the first quarter we sold almost 4 million tickets off-platform, up 32% year-on-year, helping our clients, sports teams and artists, to sell incremental tickets.

One of the major initiatives we launched in the past quarter to support artists is our “Verified Fan” product, which leverages proprietary data and analytics to screen and verify potential ticket buyers, increasing the

opportunity for real fans to purchase tickets for a show. After launching this product with Ed Sheeran, we have supported over 30 tours, including Depeche Mode, Twenty One Pilots and Harry Styles as they seek new ways to get tickets in the hands of fans. This program has been highly successful in reducing, by over 90%, the number of tickets that are then sold on secondary markets.

With this strong start to the year, we expect another record year in ticketing, driven by our concerts flywheel and enhanced by the progress we have made in our ticketing products and fan experience.


2017 is on track to be another year of growth and record results for the company. All of the leading indicators for our concerts, sponsorship & advertising and ticketing segments are ahead of last year and we expect each of our businesses to deliver record revenue, operating income and AOI this year.

Dig into the complete Live Nation Entertainment financials here:


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Mike Dias is a Sales Director for Logitech. He specializes in consumer electronics & pro audio with an expertise in headphones & portable audio. He has over 15 years of experience selling custom handcrafted in-ear monitors.

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