Live Nation furloughs 20 per cent of staff in cost-cutting package

2,100 employees forced into involuntary leave

Live Nation has reportedly furloughed 20 per cent of its workforce as part of a $600M cost-cutting package.

Per Billboard, 2,100 of the company’s 10,500 employees are affected by the decision, which comes as the live entertainment sector worldwide experiences unprecedented financial difficulty during the coronavirus pandemic.

The new furloughs are part of a concerted effort by the concert promoter behemoth to reduce costs, which began in April. A statement from April 13 hinted at the furloughs which are now being implemented.

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“Given the uncertainty associated with the duration of current conditions globally, the company has launched a number of initiatives to reduce fixed costs and conserve cash,” the company wrote.

“As part of these cost reduction efforts, the company will implement salary reductions, with salaries for senior executives reduced by up to 50 per cent, and the company’s CEO voluntarily forgoing 100 per cent of his salary for the duration of the salary reduction program.

“Additional cost reduction efforts include hiring freezes, reduction in the use of contractors, rent re-negotiations, furloughs, and reduction or elimination of other discretionary spending, including, among other things, travel and entertainment, repairs and maintenance, and marketing.”

A quarter of Live Nation’s subsidiary Ticketmaster’s employees have already been furloughed to date.

This week, Live Nation announced it planned to resume concerts at “full scale” from 2021. In an investor earnings call last week, Live Nation President and CEO Michael Rapino said the promotion giant rand ticketing agency are now looking at ways to resume concerts in their fullest form next year.

“Whether it’s in Arkansas or [another] state that is safe, secure and politically fine to proceed in, we’re going to dabble in fan-less concerts with broadcasts and reduced-capacity shows, because we can make the math work,” Rapino explained.

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“We think in the fall, if there are no second hotspots, you’ll see markets around the world [reopening]… And then our goal is really to be on sale in the third and fourth quarters for 2021 at full scale.”

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