Stay Nation Leisure, already spending way over any of its rivals on lobbying, has reportedly added to its efforts in that house. The leisure big has hired Stewart Strategies and Solutions, a Washington D.C. firm, to lobby on its behalf. The California-based firm’s account can be managed by Jennifer Stewart, a former legislative director for Re.p Greg Meeks (D-NY).
The bolstering of lobbying firepower comes amid severe legislative and regulatory stress dealing with Stay Nation, which dominates the dwell leisure business as the biggest promoter on the earth, whereas concurrently serving as mother or father firm to Ticketmaster, the biggest ticketing vendor on the earth. It has confronted repeated accusations of abusing its market energy and performing as a defacto monopoly, although it has persistently denied such accusations.
Within the newest salvo, the Senate Judiciary Committee will maintain a listening to subsequent week on “selling competitors and defending shoppers in dwell leisure” within the wake of the autumn breakdown of the excessive profile ticket gross sales course of for the Taylor Swift Eras Tour, promoted by Stay Nation and ticketed virtually solely by Ticketmaster. The listening to, scheduled for Tuesday, January 24 in Washington, was introduced late final yr within the wake of widespread outrage relating to the Eras Tour presale. Throughout that November gross sales interval, shoppers skilled large system points, delays, and noticed the unrestricted “normal” sale cancelled solely, despite held-back tickets remaining which have since begun being dripped out onto the market.
Since that point, Stay Nation and Ticketmaster have been persistently on the defensive as lawmakers have blasted them, led by Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who co-chairs the Subcommittee on Competitors Coverage, Antitrust, and Client Rights that referred to as the Judiciary listening to subsequent week. Rep. Invoice Pascrell, lengthy a critic of the leisure big and its enterprise practices, has additionally thundered away within the wake of the Swift mess. There’s reportedly additionally an ongoing Department of Justice anti-trust investigation, talk of legislation being written to handle problems with value and availability, and the top of the Federal Commerce Fee labelled the industry giants as being “too big to care.”
Spending lavishly on influencing lawmakers is nothing new for Stay Nation Leisure. The corporate reportedly spent greater than five times its competitors on lobbying in recent times, pushing arduous in opposition to consumer-friendly laws in lots of states, in addition to on the federal degree in protection of its enterprise dominance. A latest story from Digital Music News indicated that lobbying spend has elevated since then, reaching greater than $1.2 million on the federal degree in 2021 – a determine that doesn’t embrace a reported $90,000 spent on the state degree in Florida. A invoice had been under consideration in 2022 that might have made Florida certainly one of a number of states (together with New York, Virginia, Nevada, and Connecticut) that require client alternative in ticket format and resale, nevertheless it died in committee.
Lobbying spend has ballooned within the final three years, primarily based on info out there at OpenSecrets.org, averaging nicely over $800,000 per yr on the federal degree since 2020 after averaging nearer to $250,000/yr because the firm merged with Ticketmaster greater than a decade in the past:
Final Up to date on January 19, 2023 by Dave Clark