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Beyonce's World Tour: Why One of Music's Most Powerful Women Wants to Hit the Road

Beyonce, Super bowl AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

Why is Beyoncé going on a world tour if she doesn't have an album to support?
—Anya, Portland, via Twitter

Artists don't make most of their money selling records anymore. They get rich through product endorsement deals—Beyoncé has a $50 million setup with Pepsi--and tours. Sure, Bey makes at least $40 mil a year, but she stands to pocket millions more, starting with her first date in Serbia.

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Remember: Beyoncé-level acts can charge three figures per ticket; for the opening night of her MDNA tour last year, the average cost of a Madonna ticket was nearly $130. (Gross revenue for that single night? $4.3 million.) For the Dallas leg of her tour, the lowest price for a Beyonce ticket will be about $50.

And if a star is big enough—and Beyoncé sure is—she gets a chunk of each of those ticket sales, not more than 50 percent, but still, a nice percentage. Otherwise, the talent might just get a flat per-city fee of, say, $400,000, says music publicist Mayna Nevarez, currently on tour with Daddy Yankee in South America.

And the cash-in doesn't end there. Artists usually get a piece of the merchandise sold at every show—the MDNA tour raked in an estimated $75 million just through that. And you can bet that Bey's next album, due out as early as April, will get a boost from this concert.

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"Her new album is due anytime in 2013 ,and the tour is an excellent marketing strategy to ignite album sales," Nevarez points out.

Overall, says Jo-Ann Geffen, who reps music legends like David Cassidy, "She can make a fortune—hundreds of thousands a night."

So when you put it that way...can you really blame Bey for launching a tour?

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