Eventim Shrugs Off LN Wrangles

CTS Eventim’s legal wrangles over the Live Nation/Ticketmaster merger have so far cost the company an estimated euro 3.5 million, but the German ticketer’s improved performance has mostly negated that.

Earnings before interest and tax are euro 15.1 million lower than they would otherwise have been, but Eventim investor relations director Marco Haeckermann says around euro 11.6 million of that is because of the acquisition of Germany’s See Tickets and Switzerland’s Ticketcorner.

Even after these acquisition and legal costs are deducted, the company’s earnings before interest and tax for 2010 are euro 70.6 million, which is only a shade lower than the euro 71.3 million it made in the previous year.

Without these one-off costs the company’s EBIT would have been euro 85.7 million, 20.2 percent up on last year’s 71.3 million.
Group revenues of euro 519.6 million were 11.3 percent up on the 2010 figure of euro 466.7 million.

The acquisition of the German and Swiss ticketing companies and growth in its core European markets saw Eventim’s ticketing segment’s revenues rise 27.1 percent to euro 193.9 million and its EBIT increase 24.7 percent to euro 61.2 million.

The ticketing segment bore the euro 15.1 million of one-off costs, leaving the adjusted earnings before interest and tax at euro 46.1 million, euro 2.9 million down on 2009.

Eventim sold 17.1 million tickets online, a year-on-year increase of about 28 percent, and recorded 360 million visits to its various online portals.

What also stands out from the figures published Feb. 22 is another record year for Eventim’s Medusa Group of promoters, the companies headed by Dirk Becker, Folkert Koopmans, Marek Lieberberg, Norbert Link, Peter Rieger and Dieter Semmelmann.

Medusa Group set records in 2009 with a turnover of euro 318.7 million and pre-tax profits of euro 22 million, but those records have lasted only a year.

Last year’s revenues were up a further 4.7 percent to euro 333.8 million and EBIT was up 10.3 percent to euro 24.5 million.

Apart from having a successful year on the touring circuit and doing well with major festivals such as Rock Am Ring, Rock Im Park, Hurricane and Southside, Haeckermann also noted the growth of the company’s exhibition business.

Semmel Concerts’ Tutankhamun exhibition has attracted more than 230,000 visitors since opening in Cologne in September, and its run has just been extended by three months. It had already done 465,000 in Hamburg and 330,000 in Munich.

“When we started with it we knew it was a good theme but we didn’t imagine that in two years we’d have three exhibitions touring the world,” Semmelmann explained.

There are also exhibitions in Manchester in the UK and in Dublin, Ireland.

Eventim’s provisional figures are expected to be ratified by the management board March 31, when the shareholders’ dividend will be announced. More than half of the company is owned by chief exec Klaus-Peter Schulenberg.

The shares closed at euro 43.8 on the Frankfurt exchange Feb. 23, about 14 percent higher than at the same time last year and almost double what they were worth in February 2009.