LISTEN: Roger Field Talks Live Nation’s Acquisition Strategy and the Lessons He’s Learned
Roger Field, Live Nation’s president across Asia Pacific, has joined the “Fear at the Top” podcast, alongside The Brag Media’s Poppy Reid and Luke Girgis to breakdown everything from the state of Australia’s festival market to Live Nation’s acquisition strategy.
The wide-ranging chat was recorded at Small Time Studios in Melbourne.
Field also gave his assessment of Australia’s live music venue offering, and the issues faced by ticketing companies.
“I think Australian cities, cities around the world, especially cities in the Asia Pacific region, are fairly under serviced in a range of venue sizes,” he said. “I think Sydney’s got a big problem. … [Arena developments] are few and far between and patron habits change and technology improves. And what we’re seeing in North America and around the world is a lot of that technology is changing the fan experience – whether it’s the ability to walk into a retail outlet – and Marvel Stadium’s just installed this – the technology to register and then you walk into an outlet, you grab something off the shelf and you walk out and you’re automatically debited for it.
“And I think our ability to evolve the scene is limited by the lack of venues and the gaps, so I think the strategy of [Live Nation] has really changed since we last spoke to focus on venue opportunities. We are a vertical business, but the unique thing that we bring is, we’re first and foremost a content provider, and what that does is especially in a a market like Australia, is it gives us the foundation stone for the feasibility for a venue, and I don’t think that’s really existed before. .. I think what we are able to bring is obviously know-how and content.”
He also revealed how Live Nation interacts with rival ticketing companies, and what really matters when working with them.
“Any ticketing company that tells you that they don’t have a problem is not telling the truth,” he said. “They all have their technical issues, they all have little nuances, but I don’t feel that that in any way dictates who does or doesn’t get a show, or misses out from the promoter perspective. And we obviously favour where we can other parts of our businesses… But we have no issue using the ticketing provider that’s attached to a venue as long as it’s a robust system and it actually delivers what we need, which is to sell the ticket, because I think anything that blocks the connection between our consumer or the artist’s customer and us, it directly impacts our ability to sell the ticket and to retail and do what we need to do. So all systems are good as long as they’re robust and they deliver what we need.”
The “Fear at the Top” episode also covers the lessons learned since the Splendour in the Grass acquisition, The Frontier/ Chugg merger and what that meant for Live Nation, and Field’s own belief that he’s become easier to get along with since he had some of his “sharp corners knocked off”.
Watch “Fear at the Top” with Roger Field
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