U.K. regulating body clears merger
The U.K.’s Competition Commission again cleared the Ticketmaster-Live Nation merger on Friday, formally sealing the creation of Live Nation Entertainment.The overseas regulatory body had originally approved the splicing in December, but agreed to reconsider and make a new decision following a challenge to the Competition Appeal Tribunal by German ticketing firm CTS Eventim ( Daily Variety , Feb. 12). The CC again concluded that the merger would not result in a substantial lessening of competition in the ticketing arena or any other U.K. music market. Merger was approved Stateside in January ( Daily Variety , Jan. 26). Live Nation also announced Friday it had closed an offering of $250 million of senior notes due 2018. The notes have an interest rate of 8.125%. The company said it has entered into a new $1.2 billion credit line that provides for $900 million of term loans and a $300 million revolving credit. This replaces Live Nation’s and Ticketmaster’s existing credit facilities. The company plans to use the proceeds to repay Ticketmaster’s debt, to convert preferred stock of one of its subsidiaries into the right to receive a cash payment, and for general corporate purposes. (Associated Press contributed to this report.)
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