Live Nation sued by US Venue
The owner of live events venue Masonic Cleveland has sued Live Nation for $90 million, alleging that the company violated a settlement agreement as well as the Department of Justice`s (DOJ) consent decree.

TempleLive, which owns the 2,000-seat venue, filed the complaint last week in the US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio after their relationship soured and the entertainment giant stopped booking shows at the venue.

The company is suing for tortious interference and breach of contract, claiming it is owed more than $90 million in damages.

TempleLive signed an agreement with Live Nation and Ticketmaster in 2018 to book, promote, and sell tickets for all Masonic Cleveland events.

However, the agreement was terminated a year later when the parties entered into a confidential settlement agreement in which both parties “released each other from any claims for additional compensation.”

After the settlement was reached, Live Nation continued to produce shows for a short time, with the last performance taking place in November 2019.

According to The Wrap, when TempleLive`s new booking agent approached Live Nation about booking shows, an employee stated that the company "would not book events at TempleLive because TempleLive allegedly owes money to Live Nation." According to TempleLive, a similar interaction occurred with a different Live Nation representative.

TempleLive said: “Live Nation’s wrong statements have been made, or are reasonably likely to be made, to others in the live music business in Cleveland, or elsewhere throughout the United States.”

According to the lawsuit, the Cleveland-based company is in violation of the settlement agreement as well as an agreement it made with the DOJ in 2009 when Ticketmaster and Live Nation merged. A Federal Court in Washington DC agreed in January 2020 to extend the consent decree between the two entertainment behemoths until 2025.

The consent decree imposed on Live Nation required the companies to adhere to a set of conditions designed to keep consumer prices in check by preserving industry competition. One of those conditions prohibited Live Nation from "retaliating" against or threatening venues for not using Ticketmaster.

Live Nation maintains in this latest legal challenge that it has done nothing wrong by its former exclusive partner.

“As TempleLive is well aware, following the settlement in 2019 where Live Nation released TempleLive from additional financial claims we walked away from our booking partnership and are under no obligation to continue to book events at the venue. We wish them all the best,” Live Nation said in a statement.