Live Nation reported its “best quarter ever” for Q3 2018. Overall revenue was up 11%, operating income up 16% and AOI up 16%. More than 33 million fans attended Live Nation shows in Q3, up 12% over the same period last year.
Live Nation said that its arena and amphitheaters, the average ticket price was up by 14%, driven by front-of-house pricing which is up 25%. The company reported that its hospitality initiatives at its amphitheaters had borne fruit with average revenue per fan boosted by nearly $3 to almost $27. Collectively, these increases have grown artist earnings by over $300 million across roughly 6,000 shows, the company reported.
The increase in shows has benefited Live Nation’s ticketing segment and the company said that through October, they have sold 85 million tickets for Live Nation concerts in 2018, up 6% year-on-year, and are on track to sell over 90 million tickets this year.
Per Live Nation, Ticketmaster is on track to deliver almost 500 million tickets worth approximately $31 billion across 28 countries for the full year, making it the world’s largest such marketplace.
Live Nation also reported a strong quarter for their high margin sponsorship division, with revenue up 11%, operating income up 11%, and AOI up 12% year-to-date through September. The quarter saw new sponsorship deals with corporate partners that included T-Mobile, Sony, Sterling Wine, and Subway.
“As we approach the end of 2018, we are confident that our strong performance will deliver another record year of results. All of our businesses — concerts, sponsorship and ticketing — have delivered growth year-to-date through September, and based on their key operating metrics, we expect each to deliver record revenue, operating income, and AOI for the full year. As we look forward, we see tremendous opportunities to continue the global expansion of our concerts and ticketing businesses, and for further growth in sponsorship and ticketing from the concerts flywheel,” said Live Nation President and CEO Michael Rapino.