News of improved ticket sales is music to investors' ears this week. Shares of Live Nation rose 9.1% Wednesday after Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino said May ticket sales were up 7% year over year. Shares were up another 2.7% in midday trading Thursday.
"We had a fabulous January and February where sales were up over 10% year over year," he said Wednesday at the annual JP Morgan Global Technology, Media and Telecom Conference in Boston. "That gave us great encouragement that the business was starting to move forward after last year's blip. March was still up in single digits. April was down 1%."
Rapino also spoke to investors about topics ranging from its new partnership with Groupon to its festival business. Constantly upbeat during the Q&A session, he said the company is growing its market share and starting to execute better. "When the economy recovers and we start to get a little tailwind around the industry, you can start to see what kind of cash flow we can generate, as Q1 showed when ticket sales were up 10%."
Prior to Wednesday's positive news, Live Nation's stock had fallen 7.2% over the three previous trading days. Shares were down 2.2% on the 15th, down 3% on the 16th and down 2.3% on the 17th.