Live Nation, the event and ticketing monolith, has been accused of breaking antitrust (i.e. competition) laws in the US, according to reports.
In 2017 the market-leading company, which also manages some 500 artists including megastars like Miley Cyrus and U2, promoted 30,000 events, operated 200 venues and sold more than 500million tickets globally, including its $799 ‘festival passport’. It is currently ticketing for major dance offerings such as Creamfields Beijing, EDC Las Vegas, Lollapalooza and Holy Ship!— where Porter Robinson played that surprise set and Deadmau5 insane two hour techno mix.
Complaints have been received by the Department of Justice from AEG, a major rival of Live Nation, claiming stadiums, arenas and other venues were pressured into agreeing contracts with Ticketmaster, which has been a subsidiary of Live Nation since a controversial merger in 2010. It’s not clear at what stage the investigation is, although unsurprisingly a spokesperson for the accused is clear they see no legitimacy in the claims.
“You have a disgruntled competitor that is trying to explain their loss around the boogeyman that there were threats made that nobody can document,” Daniel M. Wall, Live Nation’s antitrust lawyer, told the New York Times, which broke the story this week.