Live & Touring

Live Nation CEO says ‘North American concert business is fully re-open’

Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino says that the concert business has fully re-opened despite concerns of a COVID resurgence in key states.

Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino told CNBC that its North American concert business is fully opened again as the concert industry heads into what is shaping up to be the busiest summer concert season in years.

“We’re very excited about the American market. You know, 70% of our business is going to be the U.S. and the U.K. Those two markets seem on track,” Rapino told CNBC’s Julia Boorstin during the interview on Thursday.

According to Rapino, Live Nation is currently hosting 30 nationwide amphitheater tours at full capacity, starting this week and has a slate of 10-15 summer festivals, which kicks off later this month when the Rolling Loud festival lands in Miami.

Rapino told Boorstin that he anticipates Live Nation’s European touring business will reopen later this summer and fall but added that he doesn’t foresee the concert business in Asia returning at full form until next year due to delays in vaccination rollouts.

While there is a lot of pent-up demand for shows and many artists are eager to return to the road, Rapino said Live Nation won’t be too aggressive in filling the pipeline and that artists won’t perform without the right dates and markets.

“We’re going to make sure that we don’t.. give the four shows in one week and you’ve got to pick one. We’ll spread those over a couple of years and a couple markets. So, we look at the pent-up demand as lots of availability, but we’re also going to make sure the consumer has time to buy it.”

Rapino also noted that Live Nation used the fallow pandemic year to reassess its infrastructure and processes to create a safer environment for concertgoers.

“We used Covid to do a lot of rebuilding infrastructure programs, product around Ticketmaster, but contactless was a big piece we accelerated,” Rapino said. “You’ll now go to venues and you’ll be able to get in that venue, buy your ticket, buy that beer, buy that T-shirt contactless through your app through the web.”

Watch the full interview:

via Celebrity Access

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