Concert and ticketing giant Live Nation is on a roll, reporting a strong second quarter and financial results that point to record revenue and returns ahead. But an unpredictable Wall Street sent the stock down slightly to a $51.60 close on Thursday.
"2018 is on track for the company to deliver double-digit operating income and AOI growth along with strong gains in revenue, operating cash flow and free cash flow – adjusted," CEO Michael Rapino said. "Each of our businesses is contributing to this success, as we put on more concerts for a greater numbers of fans, continue to monetize fans who come to the shows, sell more tickets to events of all types and further demonstrate the value of over 90 million fans to sponsors."
Live Nation touts that it has beat consensus across EPS, AOI, Revenue and Net Income, with revenue up 7 percent to $2.9 Billion, AOI up 18% to $260 Million, and all businesses delivering double-digit operating income and AOI growth, and expects to continue that trend for the year.
Through July, Live Nation sold 70 million tickets, 3 million more than this point last year. It has promoted more than 9,000 shows for more than 25 million fans in the second quarter and expects ancillary spend per fan growth to accelerate this year, increasing by between $2.50 and $3 per head at its owned or operated amphitheaters.
Sponsorship and advertising is 12 percent ahead of last year in committed net revenue through mid-July, with over 90 percent of planned net revenue for the year committed.
As for Ticketmaster, GTV on fee-bearing tickets is up 15 percent globally through July. TM also spent the last year rolling out its digital ticketing system Presence in 125 venues with another 75 planned in second half of year. Live Nation anticipates 60 million fans will be using the system next year
Mobile fee-bearing ticket sales are up 34 percent for the year and now accounts for 40 percent of all fee-bearing ticket sales, with mobile conversion up double digits. Increased number of events listed on Ticketmaster are up by 16 percent this year to almost 280,000 events through June.
LYV stock dipped Thursday, dropping 1.5 percent from a high of $52.64, closing at $51.60.