Saudi Arabia Buys a $500 Million Stake In Live Nation

Saudi Arabia has invested $500 million in Live Nation.
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Saudi Arabia has invested $500 million in Live Nation.
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Saudi Arabia’s capital city, Riyadh (photo: lawepw)

The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has purchased a nearly $500 million stake in leading concert promoter Live Nation.

The transaction’s details were revealed in a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing, which was shared with Digital Music News. For a total cost of approximately $500 million, Saudi Arabia bought 5.7 percent of Live Nation’s common stock – some 12,337,569 million shares – via its Public Investment Fund.

At the time of this writing, Live Nation’s stock, traded under the symbol LYV, was up more than 10 percent on the day, to over $42 per share. Significantly, the concert promoter’s per-share value had dipped as low as $21.70 in the immediate wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis, down from a 52-week high of $76.60.

Stay-at-home orders, social-distancing guidelines, and nonessential business closures (besides concern for attendees’ health, of course) prompted Live Nation to indefinitely postpone each of its previously planned shows. Additionally, widespread fan disapproval over Ticketmaster’s COVID-19 refund policies (which have since been changed) also had an impact on Live Nation’s stock price.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has taken a number of steps, relating both to social-policy changes and tech-based improvements, to diversify and open his country’s economy. Now that his nation is (literally) invested in today’s foremost concert-promotion company, it’ll be interesting to see which artists move to perform in the rapidly evolving Middle Eastern state, which is home to nearly 34 million individuals.

During the last two or so years, Saudi Arabia has welcomed an unprecedented level of foreign entertainment. New movie theaters have been built in the country, and Saudi Arabia also enjoyed its first live concert (featuring Toby Keith) in more than two and a half decades. The WWE also signed a decade-long deal to host domestic shows, and the construction of a Six Flags park commenced.

Earlier today, Digital Music News was first to report that Live Nation’s Ticketmaster had quickly updated its refund policy to prevent fans’ money from becoming tied up while event organizers select new dates. It was the second change in a matter of days.

And last week, irate ticketholders filed a class-action lawsuit against Live Nation, Ticketmaster, and the MLB; the legal complaint stemmed from refusals to offer refunds to cancelled games.

6 Responses

  1. Rabbi fxck Shake Shake Rubenstein

    They killed a journalist. The Chinese killed the world. I’ll take Saudi for $10 Bob. One of these countries will eventually own the us music industry.

  2. Angelito

    More fallout from the scamdemic. It brought Live Nation to its knees and Faihd Bobbingdollhead bought it for pennies.

    You idiots who relied on the government to give you accurate CV data get what you deserve.

    • Paul

      This isn’t about government or any of your hysteria related to COVID. It’s about LiveNation making an opportunistic move. Deals like this don’t happen overnight. If you recall, Michael Rapino bought tons of LN stock toward the beginning of this after LN stock plunged. Now this “surprise” investment comes along and their stock rises? Rapino make a chunk of money on his stock purchase. Hmm…sounds like some insider information prompted that buy.

      • Angelito

        Insider information? Good lord, it was wise speculation about the hysterical and overblown reaction by the government.

        I thought of buying Live Nation when it plunged, but I invested in airlines and related industries instead. I cannot wait to pocket the profits—already way ahead on Boeing alone.

        Good times. Keep panicking over this scamdemic and fund my retirement, sheeples!

        • Paul

          Try using your brain on this one.

          Live Nation stock drops.
          Live Nation is in talks to get a large investment.
          Live Nation CEO buys stock at a reduced price.
          Live Nation announces a secured investment.
          Live Nation stock rises.
          Live Nation CEO see gains in his investment.

          Your thoughts about buying LN stock didn’t include information from the inside about this investment. Think about it for a second before commenting stupidly.

          My comment had nothing to do with the virus. I even said that in my opening sentence, but you brought it up because you can’t help yourself. Talk about a sheeple. It’s you!

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