Deja Vu: Department of Justice files new court documents against Live Nation

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Deja Vu: Department of Justice files new court documents against Live NationLivenation

Weeks after settling on an agreement regarding ticketing malpractice, the Department of Justice has filed new court documents against Live Nation alleging… ticketing malpractice.

The new allegations stem from six unnamed venues who claim that Live Nation coerced them into using the company’s ticketing service, Ticketmaster. Although LiveNation denies the latest allegations in a statement released to Rolling Stone, the documents filed by the DOJ this week specify multiple scenarios where Live Nation stronghanded venues to use Ticketmaster. In one instance, a venue claims that Ticketmaster’s president himself retorted that the company’s response “would be nuclear” if their service wasn’t used.

Included in the Department of Justice’s court filings were requests for new governmental provisions over Live Nation and Ticketmaster, paramount among them being an “independent trustee” to oversee internal matters.

All six venues involved in the allegations have remained anonymous as to avoid further retaliation by Live Nation.

Via: Rolling Stone

Live Nation comes to agreement with Department of Justice over ticket sales

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Live Nation comes to agreement with Department of Justice over ticket salesTicketmaster

After rumors of a looming federal investigation regarding ticket sales, the concert and ticketing conglomerate Live Nation has reached an agreement with the Department of Justice. The settlement stands as an attempt to stifle wrongdoing and maintain competition in the concert industry.

The agreement acts as both an extension and addition to the 2010 consent decree formed between Live Nation and the Department of Justice that set the stage for the former to merge with Ticketmaster. The provisions of the decree aimed to deny Live Nation from forcing concert venues to use the newly acquired Ticketmaster as a platform to sell tickets for the concert promoter’s branded concerts.

The original agreement was
scheduled to be lifted in 2020 but has been extended to 2025 in lieu of recent
allegations of ticketing malpractice. Further, an independent monitor will be
appointed to monitor Live Nation’s obedience, with the financial penalty set $1
million per infraction.

Live Nation’s stock rose 9 percent following the deal with the DOJ, ultimately balancing off after a 7 percent plummet earlier in the week.

Live Nation stock tumbles following reports of DOJ action

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Live Nation stock tumbles following reports of DOJ actionLivenation

Live Nation shares fell 7.3 percent on Friday, Dec. 13 following reports of pending Department of Justice legal action against the entertainment company. Reported by The Wall Street Journal, the news details that Live Nation unfairly pressured concert venues to use its Ticketmaster subsidiary. Consequently, shares closed at $64.34, down $5.09 on the day. The drop also tumbled $1 billion off Live Nation’s market cap of $13.8 billion.

The DOJ has taken action against Live Nation on the grounds that the concert promoter has violated its 2010 merger agreement with Ticketmaster which details that the companies would not retaliate against venues that chose another ticketing service. The DOJ’s pursuit of legal consequences would extend the agreement restrictions for several years past its expiration date of 2020.

Live Nation came under fire earlier this year in August when Assistant Attorney General of DOJ’s antitrust division Makan Delrahim confirmed that the company was under investigation for alleged anti-competitive practices.

H/T: Billboard

US Justice Department Reportedly Preparing Legal Action Against Live Nation

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Justice DepartmentThe US Justice Department is preparing to take legal action against Live Nation Entertainment, Reuters reports. According to “a source familiar with the planned legal action,” the DOJ is pursuing Live Nation over allegations that the concert promoter has strong-armed venues into using its Ticketmaster subsidiary. More »

Controversial EDM mogul Robert Sillerman dies, aged 71

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Controversial EDM mogul Robert Sillerman dies, aged 71Afrojack And Sillermand Nyse Credit Billboard

Robert Sillerman, the former head of SFX Entertainment, died of respiratory failure on Sunday, November 24, according to reports confirmed by Billboard. The controversial entertainment mogul was the center of extended legal woes throughout the decade, after SFX bought up numerous EDM events and platforms including Tomorrowland, Mysteryland, Beatport, and more before tumultuous restructuring efforts and ultimately filing for bankruptcy.

In 2000, Sillerman sold the first iteration of SFX to Clear Channel for $4.4 billion, which would eventually be rebranded as concert giant Live Nation. In 2012, Sillerman relaunched SFX as a dance music promotion venture, successfully grabbing a major chunk of the market behind an aggressive acquisition strategy that ultimately resulted in SFX’s demise. The company would return once again in 2016 thanks to AEG Live CEO Randy Phillips, this time as LiveStyle, the group behind Destructo‘s AMF properties, Electric Zoo, and many more. Earlier this year, Sillerman was ordered to pay $179,000 in a securities fraud case.

Featured image: Robin Marchant

In company first, Live Nation aims to break 100 million ticket sales in 2019

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In company first, Live Nation aims to break 100 million ticket sales in 2019Livenation

This week, Live Nation has released its third-quarter financial report for the year, offering unique insight into the ebbing and flowing live music industry.

Front and center among the company’s growth is the surging global ticket sales, which have exceeded 92 million individual tickets through mid-October. The 6-percent rise since last year sets 2019 up to be the first year that Live Nation breaches 100 million tickets sold. The increase in ticket sales is in part due to Live Nation’s ambition in establishing new venues, with a particular focus on renovating existing venues for something new. This year alone, the company added 36 venues to its global portfolio, including the Brooklyn Bowls in both New York and Las Vegas, as well as Sportpaleis in Belgium. This growth in tickets sold should continue to boom, too, with 1500 stadium, arena and amphitheater shows already booked for 2020, a triple-digit rise from this time last year.

Overall, Live Nation’s reported revenue of 10.8 billion makes 2019 their best year ever, but the company’s stock dropped a drastic 8 percent on Friday when their quarterly report was released. Paramount among contributing factors are the much-enhanced income tax expenses faced by the company as Live Nation continues to expand internationally. 2019 has seen the company’s income tax expensive jump a whopping 60 percent, with 85 percent of the company’s total taxes being accrued in foreign countries. Another reasoning for the dipping stock value is the fact that while the company is reporting record numbers, they still missed Wall Street’s expectations by a significant amount.

Those looking to get their dataset on can view Live Nation’s third quarterly report here.

Live Nation admits to allocating tickets specifically for resale sites

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Live Nation admits to allocating tickets specifically for resale sitesMetallica Performance Bogota Dec 2016 Billboard 1548

Recently, a report from Billboard revealed the worldwide production conglomerate Live Nation puts tickets directly onto resale sites for popular shows. Pundits have suspected this was the case for quite a while after seeing tickets for instantly sold-out Live Nation shows appearing immediately on reseller platforms such as StubHub and ViaGogo.

According to the report, Live Nation engages in this practice to maximize profits by listing tickets on the resale sites at a rate close to the original price, thus mitigating the extreme increases in prices from scalpers, preventing fans from purchasing the tickets at all.

The report also states artists are usually the ones to make the requests for this action.

“…about a dozen artists out of the thousands we work with asked us to do this,” Live Nation said in a statement to Billboard.


Read the full report from Billboard here, which surrounds Metallica’s WorldWired tour.

Photo credit: Jeff Yeager/Metallica/Getty Images

Another gig bites the dust: Swedish House Mafia pull out of Weekend Festival

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Another gig bites the dust: Swedish House Mafia pull out of Weekend FestivalSwedish House Mafia Press Shot

It’s an angsty time to be a Swedish House Mafia fan. A good deal of their followers have complained about the lack of new music from the trio—to which Steve Angello let loose a searing response. On top of that, however, they’ve cancelled yet another gig: Finland’s Weekend Festival.

“We have production issues that can’t be fixed with such short notice and are forced to postpone the show to another date,” explained their posts on social media. The cancellation immediately stirred recent memories of their Ultra Korea dropout, which appeared to be for similar reasons. While it’s impossible to know what’s been going on behind the scenes with the iconic outfit, it is a noteworthy coincidence that these cancellations coincide with previous rumors that they’d signed a deal with Live Nation that would force cancellations of Ultra Korea and other festivals across Europe. They’d also been rumored to be headliners at Tomorrowland’s 2019 edition, but were revealed to have not been officially added to the bill.

Live Nation to eliminate single-use plastic at five major UK festivals

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Live Nation to eliminate single-use plastic at five major UK festivalsWireless Fesitval

By 2021, single-use plastic will be a thing of the past for Download, Latitude, Leeds, Reading, and Wireless festivals, according to organizer Live Nation. The event promotion giant recently announced that it would phase out single-use plastics at the five UK-based events, in a long-term plan to make Live Nation events more environmentally sustainable. Single-use bottles, straws, and toiletries will consequently be removed from Live Nation events in near future, beginning with five of the UK’s most recognizable festival brands. The company also intends to ban glitter and cable ties.

The green initiative is one small step in Live Nation’s larger plan to make all Live Nation venues zero-waste by 2030. The company also aims to reduce Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 50% by the same year.

“Hosting over 35,000 concerts and festivals each year, Live Nation has the opportunity and responsibility to provide our artists and fans with a live music experience that protects our planet,” said Michael Rapino, CEO of Live Nation Entertainment. “The adverse effects of climate change are undeniable, and we want to use our place on the world stage to be part of the solution. Together our concerts, venues, festivals, and offices around the world are setting new sustainability standards for live events.”

Live Nation is not the first to strive for a more environmentally conscious live music experience moving forward; Glastonbury notably eliminated plastic bottles from its 2019 iteration.

Live Nation To Ban All Plastics Use At Festivals

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Music festivals draw huge crowds, usually resulting in a lot of waste and trash. It’s a sad reality to look down and see all the trash on the ground. Especially at big events that draw crowds as big as 50,000 people or more. Trash stacks up quick and overflowing trashcans aren’t unusual sites to see.

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