Live Nation Entertainment has released financial results for the quarter ended December 31, 2020, as well as the full year of 2020. Despite a hefty drop in revenue compared to 2019, President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Rapino expressed optimism in a letter accompanying the report, noting that 83 percent of fans continue to hold onto their tickets for rescheduled dates. The company brought in concert revenue of about $1.4 billion in 2020, a major hit compared to $9.4 billion in 2019.
Additionally, in 2020, Live Nation showed a $950 million cost reduction, and a $1.65 billion cash savings.
Rapino’s letter addressed the company’s key initiatives including reducing cost structure by $200 million, expanding revenue opportunities by investing in concert streaming and direct to consumer businesses, such as the recent acquisition of the streaming platform Veeps, and advancing technology initiatives including digital tickets. He noted vaccine distribution gives him confidence that there is a safe return to live events in the future, with outdoor activities likely to happen first.
In part the letter says:
“The supply-demand fundamentals of the concerts business remain strong, with artists ready to get back on the road and fans eager to reconnect at events. All our data continues to show that there is substantial pent-up demand for concerts on the consumer demand side. The $2.4 trillion projected surplus in savings in the U.S. alone by June is a key indicator of consumer spending potential. At the same time, surveys demonstrate the high demand for concerts globally, with 95% of fans likely to attend a show when restrictions are lifted. This is proving out in fan behavior as well, with 83% of fans continuing to hold onto their tickets for rescheduled shows.
Given the limited touring activity in 2020 and 2021, the pipeline for 2022 is much stronger than usual, with almost twice as many major touring artists on cycle in 2022 than a typical year – about 45 artists versus the usual 25. And there remains plenty of scheduling availability…
So while the timing of our return to live will continue to vary across global markets, every sign points to it beginning safely in many countries sometime this summer and scaling further from there.”