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         The Justice Department yesterday ended its antitrust
    investigation of Ticketmaster "closing the book on an
    investigation that once threatened to dramatically alter business
    practices" for the ticket industry, writes Chuck Phillips in this
    morning's L.A. TIMES.  The one-year investigation was "prompted
    by complaints" from rock group Pearl Jam and centered on the
    company's practice of paying a portion of its service fees to
    venues in exchange for exclusive ticketing rights.  The news
    "lifts a huge cloud of uncertainly that had threatened the
    company's ambitious plans to launch new electronic services and
    establish itself as a broad-based entertainment company" (L.A.
    TIMES. 7/6).  Ticketmaster sold 55 million tickets last year for
    $1.6B.  Consumer Group U.S. PIRG estimates that the company
    averages a 27% charge on each ticket sold.  Ticketmaster Senior
    VP Judy Black said the average fee has been 12% over the last
    five years (AP/MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 7/6).

    Print | Tags: Law and Politics, Ticketmaster
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