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DOJ Nears Antitrust Lawsuit Against Live Nation

 |  May 14, 2024

Lawyers and officials from Live Nation Entertainment, the parent company of Ticketmaster, met with senior officials from the Justice Department, including Jonathan Kanter, the DOJ’s antitrust chief, last Thursday. This encounter signifies a final effort by Live Nation to ward off an impending high-profile lawsuit, with the Department potentially seeking the company’s breakup, as reported by Politico.

The investigation into Live Nation and Ticketmaster has been ongoing since at least 2022, following allegations of the entertainment behemoth’s abuse of its dominant position. Sources familiar with the matter reveal that the DOJ is in the advanced stages of preparing an antitrust lawsuit against Live Nation, with a potential filing as early as this month. However, the precise timing remains fluid, with the possibility of a delay into June or beyond, as one insider disclosed.

Read more: Live Nation May Face Antitrust Lawsuit

While meetings between Jonathan Kanter and a company’s legal representatives often mark the final stage before litigation, the government is still deliberating on its course of action. Further discussions between DOJ officials and Live Nation are anticipated, indicating ongoing negotiations.

Recent developments include DOJ staff attorneys deposing Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino and other executives, signaling an escalation in preparations for legal action.

Previous reports from POLITICO had hinted at the DOJ’s looming antitrust lawsuit against Live Nation, suggesting that the Department’s focus revolves around practices such as ticket resale restrictions and exclusive agreements with venues, particularly concerning Ticketmaster’s dominance in the ticketing market.

Source: Politico