Live Nation Reports $588 Million Loss for Q2 With Absence of Live Concerts

“Our expectation is that live events will return at scale in the summer of 2021,” Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino said

Hobbled by the lack of live concerts due to the pandemic, Live Nation on Wednesday reported an operating loss of $588.1 million for its second quarter.

Revenue for the three months ending June 30 totaled just $74.1 million, a 97% drop from the $3.2 billion in revenue the company recorded during the same quarter last year.

Concert revenue was down 95% year-over-year, coming in at $141.8 million, compared to $2.6 billion last year. But Live Nation reported a loss of $87 million from ticketing and refunds. (The company also pulled in $18.4 million in sponsorship and advertising revenue, down 88%.)

The company’s adjusted operating loss was $432 million.

“While this is a challenging time for everyone — the live events business in particular – there are a few things that I am confident about: we are well positioned to weather this crisis, and we will get through this; when it is safe to return, we will have an abundance of fans and artists ready to enjoy live music again; and Live Nation will do everything in its power to meet our responsibilities to artists, fans, our employees and everyone else affected by this shutdown by bringing back as much live music as fast as possible when it is responsible to do so,” Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino said in a statement.

At the end of the second quarter, the company said it had total cash and cash equivalents of $3.3 billion, which includes $1.8 billion of free cash. That free cash, along with $966 million of available debt capacity, gives Live Nation more than $2.7 billion in available liquidity. Live Nation said in its release that the company’s operational cash burn rate is estimated at $125 million per month.

“Over the past three months, our top priority has been strengthening our financial position to ensure that we have the liquidity and flexibility to get through an extended period with no live events,” Rapino said. “Our expectation is that live events will return at scale in the summer of 2021, with ticket sales ramping up in the quarters leading up to these shows.”

The company also highlighted that it has sold more than 19 million tickets for more than 4,000 concerts and festivals that are scheduled for 2021. Also, Live Nation said 86% of fans have opted to hold on to tickets to shows that have been rescheduled.

“We remain confident that fans will return to live events when it is safe to do so,” Rapino said. “Our strongest indicator of demand is that fans are holding on to their tickets, even when given the option of a refund.”

Live Nation said that during the second quarter it had 67 million fans view more than 18,000 concerts and festivals globally. And over the weekend Live Nation streamed 150 performances for a virtual Lollapalooza Festival.

Trey Williams

Trey Williams

Film Reporter covering the biz • • Twitter: @trey3williams


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