Sunday 18 February 2018

Full circle: U2 earn €530m from record-breaking tour

U2's Adam Clayton and Bono on stage during their '360' tour at the Olympic stadium in Turin, Italy, in 2010
U2's Adam Clayton and Bono on stage during their '360' tour at the Olympic stadium in Turin, Italy, in 2010

Luke Byrne and Gordon Deegan

AGEING Irish rockers U2 have proved that their musical appeal is far from waning after their '360' tour grossed more than €534m.

The figure, which makes the three-year behemoth the highest grossing tour by any band in history, was published in a report by industry journal 'Pollstar'.

It showed that last year alone, the tour grossed $231.9m (€176.8m) after 2.38 million music fans paid to see the band in 34 gigs across 26 cities.

The US-based publisher showed that the tour took the highest amount of any band last year and on average grossed $8.9m (€6.7m) per gig with an average attendance of 91,828.

U2's three gigs at the Murumbi Stadium in Sao Paolo, Brazil, earned the tour $32m (€24.4m) alone.

A breakdown of the annual figures showed that the tour grossed $703m (€534m) between 2009 and 2011 when three million people paid on average $101 (€77) to see the band play.


However, the figures did not take into account the significant costs involved in putting the tour on the road, including the cost of the massive production team.

Hundreds of people were employed to transport and construct "the claw" stage alone.

The gross figure for the tour, which ended last July, is good news for band members Adam Clayton, The Edge, Larry Mullen and manager Paul McGuinness.

It is also more good news for singer Bono whose investment firm is in for a windfall of over €500m when Facebook is listed on the stock market.

In November 2009, Elevation Partners -- a US investment firm in which Bono is a partner -- paid $210m (€145m) for a stake in the social networking giant. The value of the stake is now valued at around four times that amount and it is estimated that Facebook is currently worth around $100bn (€76bn).

The company moved 15pc of its revenues to Dublin in 2010 according to recently filed accounts.

This allowed it to avail of Ireland's 12.5pc corporation tax, as opposed to a corporation tax of 35pc in America.

A small group of Irish investors is also set to net around $25m (€19m) from the public listing.

Irish Independent

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