Venues from Down Under figure prominently in a new poll of the world’s leading arenas.
Billboard’s newly-published 2019 Power Arena List rank the highest-grossing indoor venues on the planet, the so-called “lifeblood of the global concert industry.”
This year, five sites from Australia and New Zealand make the cut — that’s a 25 percent hit rate across the two categories.
Among sites with capacities north of 15,000, Sydney’s Qudos Bank Arena comes in at No. 4, with a 12-month gross of US$81.1 million reported to Billboard Boxscore.
Just one place below, at No. 5, is Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena, which reported US$66 million during the 12-month period.
New York City’s Madison Square Garden is the daddy of them all, raking in $173.5 million during the 12-month span, during which time the room hosted shows by Drake, The Who, Paul Simon, Barbra Streisand, Billy Joel and more.
The Garden takes out for top spot in its class, ahead of London’s O2 Arena ($159.1 million) and The Forum in Los Angeles ($104.9 million).
For venues with a capacity north of 10,000, Brisbane Entertainment Centre ($40.5 million gross) just misses out on top spot, coming in at No. 2 behind Glasgow’s SSE Hydro ($64.5 million).
“We are seeing a two-speed market,” BEC general manager Patricia McNamara tells Billboard.
“Hot acts are selling out easily, and at times in spite of very high prices, while the acts who aren’t so hot have struggled.”
There was no struggle shifting tickets for Pink, whose Beautiful Trauma World Tour last year sold-out seven shows at the venue in Boondall, north Brisbane, while the likes of Céline Dion, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Katy Perry, Post Malone and Shania Twain also passed through.
Perth’s RAC Arena (US$34 million at No. 6) and Auckland’s Spark Arena (US$31.6 million at No. 7) also figure in the list, ahead of the world-famous Wembley Arena in London and MGM Grand Garden in Las Vegas.
The big takeaways from the report is sustainability, and venue operators’ shift toward reducing their businesses’ environmental impact.
For one, the Qudos Bank Arena (previously Allphones Arena), which this year celebrates its 20th anniversary, has invested in water-restriction tapware, installed a 70kW solar array system and it’s undergoing a conversion to LED lighting.
The article is published in the most recent edition of Billboard Magazine and can be seen here.