Sunday, August 14, 2011

Live Nation records profit in 2Q

LOS ANGELES — Concert promoter Live Nation Entertainment Inc. made a profit in the second quarter, reversing a loss from a year ago, as concert attendance went up in North America and people spent more money than last year on beer and parking.

The results announced Monday beat analysts’ expectations for a break-even quarter and provided some upbeat news on a day the stock market fell sharply because of worries about the slowing U.S. economy and escalating debt problems threatening Europe.

Live Nation, which merged with Ticketmaster last year, put on 4,243 shows during the quarter, or 16 percent more than a year ago. Fans responded as attendance grew 13 percent to 8.9 million. Spending on ancillary items such as food and parking grew3 percent to $19.21 per concertgoer.

Outside North America, Live Nation held 16 percent fewer shows at 1,591, and attendance fell 6 percent to 4.2 million.

Overall, attendance grew 6 percent to 13 million.

“We are seeing the global ticketing business stabilize and concert business grow year-over-year,” CEO Michael Rapino said in a statement.

Revenue grew 23 percent to $1.56 billion. That also was much higher than the $1.31 billion expected by analysts polled by FactSet.

Live Nation’s stock rose 47 cents, or 5.35 percent, to $9.25 in extended trading. Before the results came out, its stock fell 60 cents, or 6.4 percent, to close at $8.78 in a broad market sell-off on Wall Street Monday.