Good News For Rapino

If Live Nation chief Michael Rapino needed some good news, it’s come from Ireland, where the venue his company co-owns with Dublin businessman Harry Crosbie has just made euro 7.15 million ($10 million) in its first full year of trading.

Following a euro 80 million ($111 million) refurbishment, the venue formerly known as the Point Theatre reopened as The O2 Dublin in December 2008.

At the time, Live Nation U.K. President Paul Latham told Pollstar he believed the new venue would soon be recognized as one of the best arenas in Europe. Crosbie said it would become “the biggest people-magnet in Ireland.”

It’s currently the fourth-busiest arena in the world, according to Pollstar’s Q3 results, having shifted close to 460,000 tickets since the beginning of the year.

The financial success the venue enjoyed in 2009 was revealed by the accounts Live Nation Ireland Holdings Ltd. filed at Companies Office.

In 2008 mobile phone company O2 agreed to pay euro 25 million ($34.5 million) for a 10-year naming rights deal.

Venue operator Amphitheatre Ireland’s 2009 turnover figure isn’t available as it’s been consolidated into the filings for Apollo Leisure Group Ltd., a London-based Live Nation subsidiary.

Apollo made an operating profit of £16.9 million ($26.7 million) as revenues rose 12 percent to £66.5 million ($102 million).

The directors’ report says the number of admissions fell by 18.7 percent to 5.3 million and the number of shows fell by 24 percent to 3,814. The report says the decline was partly offset by a full-year trading from the Dublin venue.

The O2 staged 170 shows in 2009 including Beyoncé, Leonard Cohen, Coldplay and The Killers, while upcoming gigs include Lady Gaga, Arcade Fire and Elton John.