WSJ: Merger A Long Haul

The Live Nation-Ticketmaster merger is not going to be as simple as some on the inside have made it out to be, according to several sources who talked to the Wall Street Journal.

The merger is facing “stiff resistance” from the Justice Department and will require “major concessions,” according to the WSJ. Negotiations are continuing but department officials have made it clear there are elements in the merger that could prompt the DOJ to sue to block the merger, according to one source.

Justice Department antitrust chief Christine Varney has said she plans to scrutinize, more than officials of the last presidential administration, vertical integration with, as the WSJ put it, “several links in the chain between producer and consumer controlled by a single entity.”

A DOJ spokeswoman said the matter is still open, and representatives from Ticketmaster and Live Nation declined to comment.

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