Stock in concert giant Live Nation jumped $1.61 or 7.5% late last week to $23.05. It has ranged from $10.55 to $24.90 over the past year. The reason for the jump is an optimistic rating from Credit Suisse who dubbed the company "overweight" with a $28 price target.
Analyst William Drewry told AP that Live Nation is "evolving into a one-stop shop for musicians, live entertainers and concert audiences" in a era when touring has become more attractive to artists because they earn more money from a live performances than msuic sales. Live Nation recently completed a review of its real estate assets which should lead to the sale of under performing properties, "freeing up capital for possible redeployment into higher-margin projects."
The Credit Suisse analyst also pointed to new 2008 contracts with Ticketmaster and food service provider Aramark Corp. that should boost revenues. Some see Live Nation moving ticketing in-house as part of an overall effort to control and brand the entire concert experience.
Aggressive digital initiatives as well a experiments that expand the concert experience before, during and after the show may also bring new revenue. VIP packages, cell phone interactivity during concerts and post performance live downloads are just some examples of the services being tested.
EDITORS NOTE: We're considering adding a widget that tracks industry related stock prices to the Hypebot site. Would that be of interest to readers and what companies would you like us to track beyond Live Nation and the major labels?