Monday, February 23, 2009

Ticketmaster/Live Nation merger

Representative Conyers is holding hearings on the Ticketmaster/Live Nation proposed merger. An obscure Vanderbilt professor is scheduled to testify:
Ticketmaster and Live Nation are both part of the vertical supply chain that delivers live performances to fans.The “price” of this service is the difference or “wedge” between what consumers pay and what performers receive. At one end of this chain are firms that interact directly with artists, such as Live Nation. At the other end are firms that interact directly with fans, such as ticketing firms like Ticketmaster who sell tickets on behalf of venues.
The merger is interesting because it raises both horizontal (Live Nation has begun ticketing its own events) and vertical (Live Nation is Ticketmaster's largest customer) issues. The potential horizontal costs of the merger will have to be weighed against the potential vertical benefits, including increased coordination across the supply chain.

Comments solicited on the testimony.

UPDATE: WSJ article on the merger

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