Have you ever wondered: How much money did Garth Brooks concerts generate?

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. - The Denny Sanford PREMIER Center gives credit to nine sold-out shows by Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood to help break an attendance record for the events center in 2017. The PREMIER Center netted more than $2 million from all of the shows it hosted in 2017. But exactly how much did it make just from Garth Brooks?

There were almost 107,000 tickets sold for all nine sold-out shows in Sioux Falls. If you multiply 106,918 by 75, which is the amount of each ticket. Then it looks like the city could have made a portion of more than $8 million. That's actually not the case though.

"The ticket sales are really the ticket buyers money until the show happens," Deb Esche said, who is the director of finance at the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center. "And when the show happens, then they're the promoters money."

She said the PREMIER Center doesn't get any revenue from ticket sales from any concert.

"We're required by the Department of Revenue to remit the sales tax on the ticket sales although those funds aren't ours," Esche said.

The general manager of the PREMIER Center said leaving the ticket sales in the hands of the promoters reduces the risk for the city.

"We hold on to that money on behalf of the ticket buyer, so that if the show does cancel, there's money there to do the refunds," Terry Torkildson said.

The PREMIER Center makes money from a variety of other things like rental charges, billing for equipment, and labor. It won't release specific amounts of money it made from things like that though.

"Promoters don't really like us to share those numbers because like I said, every deal is different. Every show is different. And if they do favors for certain buildings and that number gets out, it can cause bad feelings," Torkildson said.

The largest portion of revenue comes from food and beverage sales.

"As we go throughout the year, our percentage changes on say beer sales from 42% to 45% to 47% to 50%. So by the end of the year, this time-frame like a big show like Garth, we were getting 50% of the food and beverage revenue flows back to the building," Torkildson said.

The Department of Revenue only releases numbers for an entire month at a time. So there's no way to break down specifically how much the PREMIER Center made from beverages or food or even labor.
But Torkildson said the PREMIER Center, as a whole, generated about $9 million in sales. The city will only keep a portion of that.

"The overall impact of the community is huge. So it's definitely worth doing," Torkildson said. "And it's also worth doing because the reputation we gain from selling out nine shows was huge in the industry."

The state made about $810,000 dollars on sales tax alone from Garth's performances at the PREMIER Center.

If you have any questions you want Vanessa Gomez to dig into, email her at vgomez@ksfy.com.