WEST HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (
) -- The proposed merger of
( TKTM) and
has elements that could prompt the Justice Department to sue to block the deal, a report says.
The deal could require major concessions, the
Wall Street Journal
reports, citing several people familiar with the situation.
Negotiations between Justice Department officials and executives of Ticketmaster and Live Nation are continuing and no final decision has been reached.
Critics of the deal have said the proposed merger would give the combined company too much power over dictating concert ticket prices.
Both companies are exploring potential remedies that could help them overcome any antitrust objections, the
reports, but people familiar with the matter said Justice Department officials have provided little guidance on what kinds of steps the companies might have to take.
As a result, the companies are still exploring various approaches. If too many properties had to be sold off, it could "undermine the whole basis for the deal," said one of these people, the
The Justice Department isn't expected to issue a ruling before late November, and possibly not until 2010. The companies originally said they expected the deal to close by the end of the year.
U.K. regulators last week announced a
provisional ruling against the deal
, saying in a statement that a merger between Ticketmaster and Live Nation would more than likely keep another ticketing operation on the sideline.
Ticketmaster and Live Nation have reiterated their commitment to the deal.
-- Reported by Joseph Woelfel in New York
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