The Associated Press is reporting that Live Nation Entertainment 3rd quarter net income fell to $51.4 million or 30 cents per share compared with $69.2 million/78 cents per share during the same period last year. The disappointing results were blamed upon heavy discounting of summer ticket prices. Live Nation merged with Ticketmaster in Jan. 2010.
AP reports Chief LNE Executive Officer Michael Rapino told analysts on a conference call Thursday the company is “scared of what will happen in November and December if that trend continues.” Live Nation reports that third quarter concert attendance dropped 16% to 16.4 million.
“Clearly the adverse economic environment has negatively impacted our concert business during the 2010 year so far, and has had a similar impact on our ticketing and artist businesses as well,” said Irving Azoff, Executive Chairman of Live Nation Entertainment. “We continue to grow our Artist Nation business with new signings and acquisitions. While our roster of superstar clients and tour schedules for 2011 remains strong, we need some improvement in the overall economic environment in order to optimize profits going forward.”
Country tours may be doing better than other formats perhaps due to more affordable ticket pricing and added value in the form of packaging multiple acts into one show. According to The Tennessean, last October’s International Entertainment Buyers Association conference in Nashville, “was already coping with less-than-good news about the music trade at the time because of lousy ticket sales and canceled shows at virtually every major concert venue in the first half of this year. Without being able to charge higher ticket prices and with corporate sponsorship dollars falling off, some concert venues might have to rethink whether they can afford the big-name acts they’ve been accustomed to booking, some participants said.”
“We know that they want to come, but we’ve got to make it affordable for them,” said Rapino.