Live Nation Hit With $5 Billion Consumer Class Action Lawsuit

Live Nation and Ticketmaster now face a $5 billion consumer class action lawsuit following the recent DOJ antitrust case. Filed May 23 in Manhattan Federal Court, the lawsuit seeks damages for millions of ticket buyers. The filing accuses Live Nation and Ticketmaster of monopolizing the live events industry by driving out rivals and pressuring venues that work with Ticketmaster competitors. This mirrors the DOJ’s allegations in its recent filing aimed at breaking up the two companies.

“Over the past three decades, Live Nation and Ticketmaster collectively built empires in several key markets within the live concert and event economy,” the lawsuit claims. It states the merger led the entity to dominate US concert promotion, primary ticketing, and secondary ticketing markets.

On Friday, the court assigned the case to US District Judge Arun Subramanian, who has a background in antitrust lawsuits. Attorneys at Israel David and Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd represent the plaintiffs in the class action.

Live Nation has dismissed the DOJ’s lawsuit as “baseless,” arguing that the live events market is more competitive than ever. Legal experts note Live Nation’s defense may hinge on the DOJ’s prior approval of its Ticketmaster acquisition. The DOJ’s new case differs from 2010 by focusing on more expansive anti-competitive conduct by Live Nation. The government argues Live Nation’s failure to follow original merger guidelines warrants the current legal actions.

As the legal battles unfold, the pressure on Live Nation and Ticketmaster is likely to intensify, potentially reshaping the live events and ticketing landscape.

Photo by Wendy Wei.