MULTI-EVENT organiser Festival Republic, 50/50 owned by Live Nation Entertainment (LNE) subsidiary Live Nation Music (UK) and Irish live music entrepreneur Denis Desmond’s Gaiety Holdings – paid its owners nearly £2.9 million last year, a reduction from last year’s £4.1m, according to accounts published in June.
This is despite a turnover increase of nearly 20 per cent, to £55.2m and an increase in operating profit of 55.5 per cent to nearly £7.6m.
The company, which operates festivals such as Download (cap. 110,000), Reading (90,000), Leeds (80,000) and Latitude (40,000), reports that its number of shows rose from four in 2017 to nine in 2018, including two “large” events, with overall admissions climbing from 619,518 to 733,384 (a rise of 18.4 per cent).
It’s not clear which additional five events Festival Republic refers to its 2018 accounts, but the company launched RiZE (30,000) that year to replace the co-promoted V Festival (87,000) in Chelmsford.
The company’s net assets have grown by 51.2 per cent to £12.9m, while overall profit grew to £7.2m, from £4.1m in 2017.
Festival Republic shareholders are Live Nation (Music) UK (50.1 per cent) and Gaiety Investments (49.9 per cent), owned by Desmond and his wife Caroline.
One unnamed director was paid the sum of £983,196, with the others paid directly by Live Nation.
Directors who served in the year-ending 31 Dec 2018 were Melvin Benn, Desmond, Paul Latham (who resigned in August of that year), Selina Emeny (appointed on 22 Aug), Stuart Douglas, chief financial officer Elizabeth Willard and Lynn Lavell.