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Live Nation chairman Irving Azoff resigns


Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images Irving Azoff is stepping back from Live Nation.

LOS ANGELES—Irving Azoff, chairman of Live Nation Entertainment Inc., resigned from the world’s biggest concert promoter three years after helping forge its merger with Ticketmaster.

Azoff, 65, manager of groups including The Eagles and Christina Aguilera, is leaving immediately, the Beverly Hills, California-based company said today in a statement. John Malone’s Liberty Media Corp., the company’s largest investor, said today it bought 1.7 million of Azoff’s shares.

Azoff, founder of Front Line Management, became chairman of Beverly Hills, California-based Live Nation in February 2011, when the concert promoter bought the rest of his artist- management business for $ 116.2 million. Azoff was chief executive officer of Ticketmaster, which was acquired by Live Nation in January 2010.

“My job here is done,” Azoff said in the statement. “I’m looking forward to returning to the entrepreneurial world and continuing to work with all my friends and colleagues at Live Nation.”

Live Nation plans to name a new chairman before the next board meeting, according to a person with knowledge of the situation. The person requested anonymity because the deliberations are private.

Azoff owned about 3 million Live Nation shares as of Dec. 21, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Liberty Media’s stake will rise to 26.4 percent with the purchase, according to the statement.

Live Nation rose 3.7 percent to $ 9.31 at the close in New York. The stock has gained 12 percent this year. Shares of Englewood, Colorado-based Liberty Media advanced 1.7 percent to $ 116.01 and have tacked on 49 percent this year.

thestar.com – Business