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Live Nation issued with subpoena by US Senate

Live Nation has been issued with a subpoena by a US Senate panel for documents regarding its ticket pricing and fees.

In a letter to LN chief Michael Rapino, Senator Richard Blumenthal says the subpoena is in connection with its previously unannounced investigation into the business practices of Live Nation and its Ticketmaster subsidiary.

Blumenthal says the PSI [Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations] first wrote to the company back in March, seeking “documents and information” relating to the probe.

“Despite nearly eight months and extensive efforts to obtain voluntary compliance, Live Nation/Ticketmaster has failed to fully comply with PSI’s requests, including refusing to produce certain documents critical to the subcommittee’s inquiry,” continues Blumenthal.

“Furthermore, the subcommittee has identified additional categories of documents necessary to complete its inquiry. As a result, the enclosed subpoena also seeks records related to Live Nation/Ticketmaster’s failure to combat artificially inflated demand fuelled by bots in multiple, high-profile incidents, which resulted in consumers being charged exorbitant ticket prices.”

“Live Nation has egregiously stonewalled my subcommittee’s inquiry into its abusive consumer practices – making the subpoena necessary”

Posting on X, Blumenthal, who tabled the “Junk Fee Prevention Act earlier this year, adds: “Live Nation has egregiously stonewalled my subcommittee’s inquiry into its abusive consumer practices – making the subpoena necessary. This subpoena demands that the company promptly comply with our request for documents essential to understand its business practices.”

The Connecticut Senator’s letter calls on LN to submit all requested documents by 18 December.

In a statement, Live Nation says it has “voluntarily worked with the subcommittee from the start, providing extensive information and holding several meetings with staff”.

A Live Nation spokesperson adds: “In order to provide additional information requested about artist and client compensation and other similarly sensitive matters, we’ve asked for standard confidentiality measures. Thus far, the subcommittee has refused to provide such assurances, but if and when those protections are in place we will provide additional information on these issues.”

Live Nation CFO Joe Berchtold offered investors an update on the DoJ’s investigation of the company during this month’s Q3 earnings call. Berchtold also defended Ticketmaster’s practices in a US Senate antitrust panel spurred by the fallout from the presale for Taylor Swift’s stadium tour at the start of 2023.


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