2023 Impact 50: Henry Cárdenas

Founder & CEO
Cárdenas Marketing Network

For many in the live music industry, 2022 was when things started to return to the way things were before the coronavirus pandemic. But for Henry Cárdenas and his family-owned company, it was a record-shattering year unlike anyone has seen in live entertainment, having had a hand in producing two of the highest-grossing tours.

“Well, 2022 was a great year after the pandemic,” Cárdenas, founder and CEO of Cárdenas Marketing Network (CMN), told Pollstar. “We finished with two of the best tours that have happened in my 40-year career, which were Bad Bunny and Daddy Yankee. We couldn’t ask for anything else; we’re fortunate that the consumer went out.”

Bad Bunny and Daddy Yankee, known as the “El Rey del Reggaeton,” were the top two Latin acts of 2022, with the former breaking records wherever he went and setting the all-time touring record by grossing $435.4 million in a calendar year, according to box office reports submitted to Pollstar. Daddy Yankee posted the best numbers of his career with his farewell tour, grossing $144 million and placing No. 8 on Pollstar’s Top Worldwide Tours of 2022.

While neither artist is expected to tour this year, Cárdenas has plenty to be excited about. CMN is producing Mexican crooner Luis Miguel’s 43-date tour, which could end up being one of the top grossers of the year. Across 328 shows, Miguel has sold 4.45 million tickets and grossed more than $370 million and that’s just one part of a roster that includes Anuel AA, Nicky Jam, Feid, Maluma and Marc Anthony, whose 2022 run grossed more than $32.6 million and ranked No. 58 on Pollstar’s Top 200 Worldwide Tours list.

“One year it’s one guy, and the next it’s another artist,” Cárdenas says. “There’s great development in all the genres. Urban has got Feid coming up and Karol G, and on the Mexican side you got Eslabon Armado, Ana Gabriel, Pancho Barraza and Banda MS. We keep busy; it’s been great. We just have to make sure we keep our eyes open for the talent coming up.”

With Cárdenas’ track record, there’s no doubt he’ll find more artists to build up.