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AG Nessel Joins Federal Antitrust Lawsuit Against Live Nation, Ticketmaster

LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel joined the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and a bipartisan coalition of 29 states and the District of Columbia in filing an antitrust lawsuit against Live Nation Entertainment, Inc. and Ticketmaster L.L.C., a wholly owned subsidiary of Live Nation. The lawsuit alleges Live Nation has illegally monopolized the live entertainment industry through anticompetitive practices, limiting consumer choice, and driving up ticket prices.

“Michigan concertgoers deserve the chance to experience the thrill of seeing their favorite artist live, in a venue close to home, without breaking the bank,” Nessel said. “Unfortunately, this dream is out of reach for many because of Live Nation’s illegal monopoly. A truly competitive marketplace is essential to providing consumers with choice. That’s why I, along with the Department of Justice and other states, are taking a stand against Live Nation’s practices that limit choice, hamper innovation, and unfairly inflate prices.”

Live Nation, recognized as the largest live music promoter in the world, merged with Ticketmaster in 2009, consolidating its position as the dominant force in the primary ticketing services industry. 

In the lawsuit, filed in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York, the DOJ and states allege that:

  • Live Nation has maintained its anticompetitive monopoly in ticketing markets by locking up venues through restrictive, long-term, exclusive agreements and threats that venues will lose access to Live Nation-controlled tours and artists if they sign with a rival ticketer.
  • Live Nation leverages its extensive network of amphitheaters to force artists to select Live Nation as a promoter instead of its rivals, maintaining its promotions monopoly.
  • Live Nation’s conduct has harmed fans through higher fees, lack of transparency, fewer consumer choices, and stifling innovation.

The lawsuit asks the court to restore competition in the live entertainment industry by prohibiting Live Nation from engaging in its anticompetitive practices and ordering the company to divest Ticketmaster.

A copy of the complaint is available here (PDF).

In joining the DOJ’s complaint, Nessel is joined by the Attorneys General of Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.


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