Ed Sheeran has broken yet another music industry record, this time for the most money earned from a calendar tour in one year, with his Divide world tour raking in $432 million in 2018, according to industry analyst Pollstar.

Sheeran’s tour, behind his third studio album Divide which was released almost 21 months ago in March 2017, sold 4.86 million tickets over the last 12 months. It included four dates at the 90,000-capacity Wembley Stadium in London.

The tour began in the middle of 2017 and, in total, and has already become the third highest grossing tour of all time. Sheeran still has dates to perform next year before the tour draws to a close in August with four huge homecoming gigs in Leeds and Ipswich.

Ed SheeranEd Sheeran performing live in March 2017

“The Divide Tour was a perfect storm of medium-priced tickets, future classic singles that exploded globally, a compelling solo performance that embraced audience participation, a production that was successfully upgraded from arenas to stadiums, and having a huge online presence that connected him directly with fans,” said Andy Gensler of Pollstar.

The highest-grossing tour of all time remains the spectacular 360 world tour by U2, which took a total of £532 million over three years from 2009 to 2011.

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Records were also broken for combined overall grosses, with the top ten worldwide tours generating a total of $2 billion between them for the first time, up from $1.8 billion in 2017.

Taylor Swift was in second place, with $345m from 2.88m tickets sold on her Reputation tour. Incredibly, she and Sheeran alone accounted for 14% of revenues from the top 100 grossing tours of the year. They were followed by Jay-Z and Beyoncé’s collaborative On the Run II tour, which generated $254m from 2.16m tickets.

Pink, Bruno Mars, the Eagles, Justin Timberlake, Roger Waters, U2 and the Rolling Stones rounded out the top ten of the list.

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