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FEATURES Paperless Ticketing


Outing the Touting


The Innovators








The Baltics














Czech Republic












Hong Kong


















The Netherlands


New Zealand
















South Africa










United Arab Emirates


United Kingdom


United States of America


ITY Partners


Company listings








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DEAR READER Welcome to the International Ticketing Yearbook 2018 – the fourth time we have put the global ticketing business under the microscope, with the following pages placing the details of no fewer than 44 countries at your fingertips. This year’s edition also contains three specialist features: Outing the Touting (page 12) examines how three specific acts have devised strategies to prevent their tickets appearing on secondary ticketing markets; Paperless Ticketing (page 6) speaks for itself; while The Innovators (page 16) identifies some of the companies that are developing new and interesting systems, products and platforms to improve the existing ticketing business. Reading through this year’s country profiles, there are two main trends that seem to occur again and again – consolidation and fragmentation. Consolidation: the big aggregators are getting bigger (Live Nation Entertainment, CTS Eventim, TEG Live, BookMyShow), and new private equity entrants are taking notice of the ticketing business like never before, perhaps because continuing mergers and acquisitions offer them guaranteed returns. Fragmentation: as always in ITY, there are numerous newbies aiming to disrupt the business with new technologies and services. In the USA, biometrics and ID-ticketing are a major topic of debate, while direct-to-fan solutions; dynamic pricing; mobile-only; ticket bundling and packaging; ticket exchange and resale; and white-label B2B systems not only dominate ticketing conferences, but increasingly make up the majority of the trade stands, too. As the reach of advance ticket retail spreads internationally and across genre – cinema, music, performing arts, sports, theatre – the strategic importance of ticketing to live entertainment continues to be of primary importance and focus. But, as our executive editor Tim Chambers warns, no organisation should neglect the end-consumer – a lesson that many organisations in the ticketing industry appear to have missed. Talking of Mr Chambers, this publication would be nothing without him, so thanks, as always, go to our ticketing guru for taking the time out from his numerous consultancies to lend his brain to us over the past year. Thanks also to all of the people named in the masthead below for their hard work in tracking the various developments around the world. Last, but definitely not least, humble thanks, of course, to all of the companies and organisations that participated in this year’s ITY – we hope you find it helpful over the coming year. Gordon Masson, Editor

INTERNATIONAL TICKETING YEARBOOK 2018 IQ Magazine Unit 31 Tileyard Road King’s Cross London N7 9AH

PUBLISHER ILMC & Suspicious Marketing EDITOR Gordon Masson | gordon@iq-mag.net EXECUTIVE EDITOR Tim Chambers | chambers.tj@gmail.com DESIGN Philip Millard | rathernicedesign.com





























































MARKETING & ADVERTISING Terry McNally | terry@iq-mag.net Archie Carmichael | archie@iq-mag.net CONTRIBUTORS Chris Austin, Lars Brandle, Ben Cardew, Caroline Chia, Eamonn Forde, Karl-Hermann Lipp, Steve McLean, Christine Payne, Justin Sweeting, Adam Woods

SUB EDITOR Michael Muldoon | michael@ilmc.com





Eamonn Forde talks to some of the entrepreneurs

and developers who are creating a paper-free future (and present) for the international ticketing industry.


ven as little as two decades ago, buying concert tickets may have involved queuing up at the venue box office. If it sold out, a fan took their chances with the touts outside in the hours before the show. Things have, for the most part, improved dramatically for the customer, where they can easily and quickly buy online or via mobile. Of course, the touting market has given way to the secondary market and that comes with its own problems, but at least no one has to camp overnight outside a venue for tickets today. In recent years, a new wave of start-ups and entrants has raised the bar for digital innovation with regard to ticketing. Digital is no longer just a payment and distribution system – it is pushing the ticketing market into whole new areas, unlocking new opportunities, and trying to solve some of the problems that were unfortunate byproducts of the first big digital push at the turn of the millennium. An increasingly common and enraging issue for the sector is fans being sold duds or duplicates of tickets by unscrupulous online vendors. When tickets are sent to the original purchaser as a PDF, they can be sold on to multiple unsuspecting individuals – but only the first one to get to the venue will be successfully scanned in. Marie Goldman, a former management consultant, saw this exact scenario play out around six years ago when buying her parents tickets to a show from a secondary site. It planted a seed in her mind that, if technology was the problem here, then technology could also be the solution. This resulted in her setting up Piktical a few years later. “The idea we come up with was a centralised database,” she says. “We don’t sell or resell tickets – but we act as a delivery system and a verification process for tickets. It’s like a clearinghouse for tickets. But you have to do it in a way that works for the industry as a whole, and all the stakeholders – including the fans.” The system runs on facial recognition – so users need to register for an account and, as part of the registration process, upload a selfie. “Five years ago, this technology wasn’t quite there – but it is absolutely good enough to do this now,” she argues. “It’s good enough now that we can do this from mobile phones.” Under certain conditions, tickets bought this way can be passed onto family and friends, and the company is also working with ethical secondary sites to allow customers to sell on tickets if they genuinely cannot attend the event. With facial recognition technology commonplace at airports, Goldman feels the time is right for the

live industry to fully embrace it. “Your face is your ID,” is how she puts it. “As long as you are you, then we can still let you into the event.” Fake tickets were also the trigger for the establishment of Dublin-based Tixserve. But MD Patrick Kirby also wanted to push the ticketing industry out of what he saw as a “dependence on paper.” Fraud and scams were part of this but he also felt that paper tickets, ironically, did not leave a paper trail around the customer. “We noticed that once a rights owner sells a ticket, they lose control,” he said. “There is no audit trail. One of the symptoms of that loss of control is the secondary market. [What we have built] addresses the security and loss of control issues through track and trace technology. The lack of data is addressed by the fact that every ticket has to have a name on it; every person on the system has to register their name and their mobile number. You always will have visibility on who is sitting in the stadium – be that a sports event or a concert. And being digital, the costs of distribution are extremely attractive.” Using dynamic QR codes that are only activated at a certain time before the doors open or if the user gets within a certain distance of the venue, this can cut down on fraud dramatically. Plus, as tickets are tied to mobile devices, the device itself can become a way to alert customers to important information about the venue, but also sits as a sales driver for promotions around refreshments or merchandise. Based in Edinburgh, Citizen Ticket is also using technology to permit the exchange of tickets among friends (rather than for a vastly inflated profit); but it is using identity profiles rather than facial recognition as a solution here. “You can pass tickets on and that is fine with us – but in order to do so, you have to give us more information on your identity,” explains co-founder Harry Boisseau. “If you wanted to buy one ticket, you could just give us an email address and that is fine. But if you wanted to buy ten tickets and transfer those to your friends, which could be legitimate, you just have to build up your identity profile with us to the point where we are happy you are not a bot or a ticket tout.” Data, of course, is key to the modern music industry – variously described as the new oil, the new gold or the new soil – and for the live industry it takes on a particular new resonance around audience safety in the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris, Manchester and Las Vegas. “Data security is one of the big issues,” says Maureen Andersen, president and CEO of North American trade body INTIX, about what issues are foremost in her members’ minds. “The concept of who owns the data has never gone away; if



PAPERLESS TICKETING “FIVE YEARS AGO, THIS TECHNOLOGY WASN’T QUITE THERE – BUT IT IS ABSOLUTELY GOOD ENOUGH TO DO THIS NOW. IT’S GOOD ENOUGH NOW THAT WE CAN DO THIS FROM MOBILE PHONES.” MARIE GOLDMAN, PIKTICAL anything it has become more potent. Venue security and all the technology that goes with that [is key]. Data security is something that is incredibly important to everyone.” Related to the growing importance of data is the impact of social media and how this can be harnessed to track the rise of acts, and also help accelerate their market impact while also selling tickets. Founded in Slovenia, Viberate began in the dance music sector as a way to measure the social media popularity of DJs, crowd sourcing information around them, and getting to 30,000 tracked profiles within a year and a half. It has expanded into other genres and its database now has over 300,000 musician profiles. “We are doing for the music industry what IMDb is doing for the movie industry,” says Vasja Veber, the company’s co-founder and COO. “We are a database of music stakeholders.” For them, social engagement is the most important metric. “From those measurements we could determine who is popular and who is not,” he explains. “We are measuring popularity on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Spotify.” It lists upcoming gigs for acts on its database and links this to the 90,000 venues globally it has on its system, partnering with ticketing companies such as Ticketmaster and Eventbrite to sell tickets. Veber argues that affiliate revenues from ticket sales here is not where his business needs to be, and the long game is to parlay into offering a blockchain-based ticketing solution. “This is not intended to compete with the bigger ticketing providers, as we know they have established businesses and huge venues that are always using their services,” he says. “We are aimed at smaller venues that don’t want to deal with ticket providers but who want to have their own ticketing solution. Blockchain is an ideal tool to do that.” The mere mention of blockchain is still something its evangelists get hugely excited

Oxynade provides ticketing services for Positivus Festival in Latvia

about, while others are keen to puncture the hype around it all. It is still a divisive topic across the industry, and seen as either a saviour or a damp squib depending on what side of the debate you fall. “The beauty of the blockchain is that you can control the entire lifecycle of the ticket – from the beginning right to the end,” proposes Katerina Kirillova, co-founder of Tickets Cloud. “As an event organiser or a distributor, you can set the terms around how the tickets can be resold or refunded. Our Smart Tickets [issued on the blockchain] are guaranteed to be unique and protected against fraud. The history of the ticket is going to be transparent.” While the notion of the blockchain might be seen as (for now) confusing to a mainstream audience who are not necessarily au fait with cryptocurrencies, its supporters argue it can still run under the bonnet and will eventually become normalised. “Even though there is a somewhat complex technical aspect to the blockchain element of our system, the everyday user would never notice this,” argues Olivier Biggs, community manager at GUTS Tickets. “We realise most people just want to buy a ticket with the money in their wallet, receive their ticket and enjoy the show. The

blockchain component of the way we work is just a part of the infrastructure. It’s comparable to the Internet; most people don’t know how it works exactly – and don’t really care. They just want it to work and make their lives better. Which it does.” Blockchain solutions are also seen as bringing a new type of transparency to the live music industry in the way it is starting to do for recorded and publishing rights. “You are able to trace on a transparent and public ledger under whose account those tickets are held,” suggests Cédric Cobban, president and founder of PeerTracks. “As far as the chain goes, you can issue your ticket on the chain. That means you could effectively tokenise all ticket purchases, and once they are sold to an account name then only that account name can use them.” He is especially excited about the effect that blockchain could have on the DIY and indie sectors, giving players here new powers. “I think blockchain will definitely put it on steroids and speed things up,” he says of how he sees its long-term impact. Against all this elation, however, there are some who feel the hyperbole is writing cheques for the technology that it cannot (yet) cash. They feel a more circumspect approach is preferable. Evopass was set-up in late 2016 in order to try and use the blockchain to eliminate fraud from

Hans Nissens Oxynade

Jake MccGwire Evopass

Talking Heads

Adam Levine Tokenly

Cédric Cobban PeerTracks


Harry Boisseau Citizen Ticket

Katerina Kirillova Tickets Cloud



is not today. “The latency of blockchain is not suitable for an online and real-time application such as live event ticketing,” he argues. “What we have done is noted that blockchain may evolve and we are not saying that it can’t be used in the future; but in its current application it is not the right option for us.” Alan Gelfand, CEO and founder of Fair Ticket Solutions, also feels mobile is a solid solution for many of the issues but takes a much harder line here on blockchain’s viability. “Everybody is talking about blockchain right now – but I am going to make a very strong statement here,” he says. “There is no value to blockchain if you can get everyone on mobile. Once you have got everyone on mobile, what do you need blockchain for? Blockchain tracks every transaction; but so does mobile. One of the advantages of blockchain is cryptocurrency and how that will tie in in the future; but that is five or ten years away at best.” Andersen feels that, while not ruling it out completely, there will be a waiting game before

blockchain has the chance to come of age for the ticketing sector in North America. “We will get there but I don’t think it is going to be in 18 months. I think it is going to be more in the three-year range – because of the safety of it and the volatility of it right now […] The US only adopted chip-andpin 18 months ago. So going into blockchain and bitcoin is not going to be a fast process.” Adam Levine, CEO of Tokenly, however, feels that things are starting to align here and a further technological push will help recalibrate things in the technology’s favour. “There are so many problems with the existing [blockchain] system right now because it is created out of a hodgepodge of technology and regulation that was never really up to the task that it was being asked to perform,” he argues. “That is the opportunity that I see here. There is now a protocol, and there are multiple ways to do it using this sort of technology where you can create a neutral playing field.” As wave after wave of new ticket-selling platforms race into this evolving market, there is also a concurrent rise in opportunities for white-label services, something Oxynade spotted, and that saw it move out of the primary market in Belgium. “Two years ago we did a U-turn and took a new approach,” says Hans Nissens, the company’s CEO. “We started focusing on ETaaS [e-Ticketing as a Service, similar to SaaS – Software as a Service]. This allows us to take an international approach. We are a software partner for ticketing agencies and distributors who need a very solid and fullfeatured ticketing software […] As is typical with a SaaS solution, you don’t need any large upfront investment. We have an onboarding road-map so it can all be set-up pretty quickly. It is something that we can offer not only to corporate ticketing agencies but we also support some start-ups.” Partly out of necessity at the start of the 2000s, it was labels and retailers really driving the digital changes in the music industry. But in recent years, it is live, and especially ticketing, that is pushing digital innovation. The jury may still be out – for now – on blockchain as the ultimate solution, but that does not mean the ticketing business is easing into digital apathy. As the range of companies active here proves, the exact opposite is the case.

Patrick Kirby Tixserve

Maureen Andersen INTIX

Eventbrite has developed RFID technology as part of its paperless ticketing solution

“WE ARE DOING FOR THE MUSIC INDUSTRY WHAT IMDB IS DOING FOR THE MOVIE INDUSTRY. WE ARE A DATABASE OF MUSIC STAKEHOLDERS.” VASJA VEBER, CO-FOUNDER & COO, VIBERATE a retail perspective – but moved away from that as existing, and mainstream, technology was something they saw as capable of solving these problems. “We realised it wasn’t necessary for what we were trying to achieve,” says Jake MccGwire, the company’s CEO and co-founder. “We could quite easily do it with mobile ticketing and some clever algorithms. What we developed was an algorithm that caused the QR code to constantly regenerate. That means you cannot screenshot your ticket, and it enables us to have control over the ticket at all times.” Kirby also feels blockchain’s moment is possibly in the future but, from his perspective,

Talking Heads

Marie Goldman Piktical

Olivier Biggs GUTS Tickets


Vasja Veber Viberate

From secure mobile apps to unique ticket numbers, there are many ways to fight industrial-scale online ticket touting. Chris Austin examines three hugely successful approaches being employed by three different bands to keep tickets in the hands of fans.

PIXIES Richard Jones at Key Music Management has

overseen a strategy that made sure that tickets to the Pixies 2018 London shows can only be resold at face value on fan-to-fan service Twickets. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the band’s debut album Surfer Rosa, the Boston altrockers will play five consecutive nights at the Roundhouse in London, commencing 30 October. The shows will see the band perform both the 1987 eight-track mini-LP Come On Pilgrim and 1988’s debut full-length album Surfer Rosa, from start to finish. “Obviously, we knew it would be a ridiculously hot ticket, and they would be the kind of shows that would usually provide a field day for ticket touts and scalpers. We had to come up with something that would prevent that happening,” says Jones. The result was a multifaceted strategy that saw the dates sell out swiftly without a single penny being spent on marketing or advertising. The first step was to minimise the number of outlets able to sell the tickets. Jones decided to limit ticket availability to See Tickets and the Roundhouse box office. The aim was to create clarity around pricing, so an all-in ticket price of £50 (€56) was set with no additional charges. “It meant everyone could understand easily that they were buying an official ticket from an official seller at the official price. We feel there is a lot of confusion surrounding the purchase of tickets. People don’t always understand when they are buying a secondary ticket at an inflated price – with all the additional fees that are added, no one is clear exactly what the tickets are supposed to cost,” he says. To ensure that the ticket purchaser is the one that actually attends the concert, Key Music Management insisted that the tickets were personalised with the name of the principle purchaser. Jones says he also wanted to create another level of security, and to support the UK Government’s decision to update the Consumer Rights Act 2015 in April with its legislation relating to unique ticket numbers (UTNs). If an event organiser marks their tickets with a UTN and

makes it clear in their T&Cs, then resellers now have a duty to provide this information to a buyer. “We were the first people to use it. We wanted to show support for the fact the Government is trying to do something about the issue legislatively,” he says. Purchasers were limited to four tickets and were told they must arrive at the venue with their whole group and bring photo ID, such as a passport or driving licence, to gain entry. In order to facilitate fans unable to attend the concerts due to unforeseen circumstances, the terms and conditions state that tickets can be resold but only via Twickets and at face value. Jones is far from a fan of pre-sale initiatives, and another key step was not announcing the shows in advance of the on-sale. “We sent an email to everyone on the database announcing that the tickets had gone on sale. Nothing was spent on advertising. The reason we did that is because all pre-sales do is alert professional ticket buyers about what you are doing. It simply enables the best people at buying tickets to have the best chance to buy your best tickets. It is completely self-defeating,” he says. The email included clear and concise ticketing T&Cs, and an explanation that they were being implemented to protect fans from being exploited. Interaction with fans is ongoing.


“We respond to messages very quickly and have made sure people at the venue, See Tickets, and the promoter, are all well versed as to what we are doing and why. There is a consistent messaging across the board,” says Jones. Each night, a team of people will be present at the Roundhouse door to handle any issues that come up at the last minute. “We will have to see how it goes. There will be some problems I’m sure but we have trained people well and there is a system in place to deal with any issues that arise. These are the hoops you have to jump through in order to protect fans from being ripped off,” he says. All the shows have sold out and, despite a few dubious listings on Viagogo, no tickets have been resold outside Twickets. “No one is sure whether Viagogo have the tickets or not. They had tickets on sale immediately after the on-sale, so there is no way they are legitimate, but we will have to wait to see on the day,” says Jones. The Pixies’ manager is delighted that the initiative has not only successfully frustrated scalpers but also won strong support from fans. Says Jones, “It has been incredible. We have not had a single negative comment from fans. Everyone sees it as a really good thing to be doing. At the end of the day, it has meant a lot of extra work but it has been well worth it.”



Iron Maiden played Tallinn’s Saku Suurhall in May 2018

IRON MAIDEN Phantom Music Management CEO Rod

Smallwood and his team virtually stamped out secondary ticket sales for Iron Maiden’s The Book of Souls 12-date UK tour last year, and have maintained the same level of success for this year’s dates. Thanks to the management team’s impressive antitout initiative, listings on secondary sites were down 97% on the previous Maiden UK tour in 2011 when 6,294 tickets were found to be available across multiple resale sites after the on-sale. For the run of dates in May 2017, Phantom adopted a paperless ticketing policy wherever possible, and where physical tickets were unavoidable they carried the name of the purchaser. In order to gain entry to the gigs, fans had to present government-issued photo ID and the relevant payment card. For the May 2017 shows, more than 100,000 tickets were sold on the first day on sale, all at the intended price. On the Monday after, only 207 tickets could be found available for resale, all on Viagogo. Smallwood says it is highly unlikely those tickets were authentic. “We don’t think they existed. The day before we went on sale they had tickets listed and said the tour had already sold out. Viagogo is a highly dubious operation. We had to write to their senior management asking them to please stop selling tickets for an Iron Maiden show in Chile that didn’t exist. Viagogo didn’t respond,” says Smallwood. The paperless approach was so successful that it was again adopted for Iron Maiden’s UK summer tour this year. Smallwood is delighted with the results. “Over the two tours, we have

sold around 250,000 tickets for about 20 sold-out shows, all of which were at face value,” he says. Iron Maiden’s manager has railed against secondary ticket operators for the best part of a decade, having been first approached by a Viagogo representative back in 2009 and offered a cut of profits. “We realised pretty quickly that they were ripping off the fans,” he says. As a result, Smallwood introduced paperless tickets for Iron Maiden’s 2010 US tour. He tried the same move with the band’s UK dates the following year, but with venues asking for huge sums to cover costs, it became unfeasible. “I was really annoyed, all these fans were being ripped off by people who add nothing to the equation,” he says. For the 2017 shows, GetMeIn!, Seatwave and StubHub were informed about the paperless initiative and agreed not to list the tickets. “We were pretty hard line on that. I got together with Reg Walker at The Iridium Consultancy and we planned out how to go about it. We were able to get the message across to a lot of the power brokers that if they resold tickets for Iron Maiden, their management would go through hell and high water to come after you,” says Smallwood. The veteran manager is quick to praise Ticketmaster, who he says played a huge role in the success of the paperless initiative. “As soon as we said we wanted to go paperless they were supportive,” says Smallwood. Phantom worked closely with the Live Nation-owned operation to maximise the paperless inventory. Ticketmaster’s Captcha software was used to distinguish bots from humans, transactions were limited to four tickets, and IP addresses were monitored in order to prevent repeat purchasing. A key aspect of the initiative’s success was the way in which Smallwood’s team engaged with fans. Warnings were issued stating that tickets would not be made available via GetMeIn!, Seatwave and StubHub, and at the point of purchase fans were made aware of why the initiative was being carried

out and what it involved. The management team also partnered with Ticketmaster to produce a light-hearted video entitled, How Paperless Works, to clearly explain the venue entry process. The animation has been viewed nearly 50,000 times on YouTube. Tickets were made available nine months before the shows, and during the period between on-sale to the night of the shows, Phantom and Ticketmaster continued to communicate with the fan base. They not only answered queries about the availability of tickets and official purchasing channels but also handled T&C enquiries, and authorised ticket transfers and refunds when necessary. As well as the band’s official website, social media channels played a major role in keeping fans informed. Smallwood says that it didn’t take long before the band’s fans began to offer each other advice about the new entry process and the reasoning behind it. To make sure any last-minute queries were handled with a human touch, an Iron Maiden representative was present at the venue box office on the day of each show. “It was a final line of defence. If the box office is being awkward then he is there to state that Iron Maiden approve of the person being let it. It is a useful safety net for us,” says Phantom Music Management’s head of digital Sarah Philp. Ticketmaster also had a team on hand at every show to handle issues, but overall less than 2% of fans required any kind of customer service. Says Smallwood, “We have sold 250,000 tickets at face value, over two years, without any complaints or anyone being turned away. If more bands did it the public would be more educated about how paperless works. “It takes a bit more effort to keep the tickets off secondary platforms, but it does work and the money saved by fans could well end up being spent on other shows.”




FANFAIR ALLIANCE: FIVE TOP TIPS TO TOPPLE TOUTING In conjunction with the FanFair Alliance, a growing number of artists and their managers are finding fresh and effective ways of ensuring that fans are not ripped off by unscrupulous resale merchants. Here, FanFair Alliance campaign manager Adam Webb offers a five-point plan to limit the impact of scalpers.


COMMUNICATE Tell customers in advance where and when your tickets will be going on primary sale: from which agents and at what time – including pre-sales. Tell them which sites not to buy from. If the culture minister can warn people against Viagogo, then so can you.


HARNESS THE POWER OF T&CS As a result of recent legislative and regulatory changes – and particularly the

enforcement of the Consumer Rights Act 2015, which makes mandatory requirements on secondary sites and sellers to provide detailed information to buyers – terms and conditions can be genuinely disruptive to dedicated touts. In effect, artists and event owners have been empowered. Make it crystal clear in your primary T&Cs that your tickets are not a “commodity” but a personal revocable licence (or words to that effect) and are for consumer purchase only. Tickets purchased by businesses or traders will be cancelled, and they will be invalidated if they are offered for resale at a profit.  Consider printing the lead booker’s name on tickets, with ID required to gain entry. Or employ a digital ticketing solution.  


GET RID OF THE SMALL PRINT T&Cs are important. So turn your small print into LARGE PRINT. Insist that the rules of sale and resale are prominently displayed across all your ticketing partners. Include them in all relevant artist communications, including social media. Ideally, consumers should understand the rules of engagement before they actually purchase a ticket. It won’t hurt to remind them afterwards either. Or to email/text them another reminder just before show time. 


Since it launched in 2014, mobile ticketing

app Dice has carved out a niche in the highly competitive UK ticketing market by tying tickets to the mobile devices from which they were bought, making unauthorised resale impossible. “Our background was in artist management and one of the main things that we wanted to fix with ticketing was the problem of the secondary market,” says Dice managing director Russ Tannen.

When Tim Burgess of The Charlatans, and the band’s promoter approached him about working with them to keep tickets for four homecoming shows off the secondary market, Tannen knew it was a perfect fit. The string of shows in May saw the Northwich band play four nights at the Cheshire market town’s 500-capacity Memorial Court. With the gigs being underplayed and featuring special guests and related events, demand for tickets was always going to outstrip supply. Says Tannen, “They were really keen to make sure the tickets went to fans, and were looking for a solution that was going to prevent the tickets ending up on secondary sites. They didn’t know, going into it, how much of a foolproof solution we had already.” An iOS and Android compatible app, Dice enables tickets to be securely stored on a purchaser’s phone from which transfer can be prevented. Explains Tannen, “The aim from the outset was that Dice would be completely mobile, and tickets would be locked into the app, so there is no paper involved or e-ticket emailed, and there is nothing that can be moved to an Apple Wallet. We developed security features that mean a ticket doesn’t become active until an hour before the doors open, it is an animated ticket that moves on screen, you cannot screen grab it, the ticket is completely locked to the device.” With the app doing all the hard work, The



PROVIDE A RESALE SERVICE Sometimes, ticket buyers, for genuine reasons, will be unable to attend a show. If you do not provide them with a resale or reallocation mechanism it will likely have three consequences: (i) it will piss off your customer; (ii) your T&Cs could be considered “unfair” and incur the wrath of the CMA; and (iii) it might unwittingly push fans towards Viagogo, who can be relied upon to list any ticket regardless of T&Cs.   None of these outcomes are desirable, so make resale easy, make it fair, and make it transparent.


LINK TO FANFAIR ALLIANCE GUIDANCE We have produced two practical consumer guides that are available for free online at Fanfairalliance.org. The first offers ten tips for ticket buyers, such as, do not trust search engines and check the artist website for reliable ticketing information. The second is a Victim of Viagogo self-help PDF for chargebacks and refunds. By using this advice, hundreds of thousands of pounds have been refunded to fans that were ripped off when buying tickets on the secondary market.

Charlatans’ fans were left to attend the shows in the normal way, all they needed to do was show their phone at the venue door to gain entry. “Because the tickets were locked into mobile devices, we did not have to bombard fans with complicated ticket terms and conditions. We were not asking them to do anything extra, or unusual. We just make sure tickets are in the hands of fans and stay there. It is not about making things more complex by making restrictions around the purchase,” says Tannen. The Charlatans’ ticketing initiative was a great success, and not one ticket for the Northwich shows was listed for sale on any of the secondary ticketing sites, including Viagogo. However, while monitoring Twitter, the Dice team did come across some individuals bragging that they had tickets they wanted to sell for the gigs. “You never know to what lengths people will go to resell tickets. Perhaps they were offering to meet people and walk them in. We contacted the relevant individuals via social media and if we felt there was any likelihood of suspicious activity we removed the tickets from their account and then reallocated them to people on a waiting list,” says Tannen. The Dice MD believes that one of the key contributing factors to the initiative’s success was the hands-on approach of the band, with Burgess responding online to messages from fans about the app, tickets and the entry process. “In Northwich, we did not have a huge user base prior to the shows, so lots of people were using it for the first time and there were many questions about it, but when they understood what it was and why the band were using it, the fans were very supportive,” says Tannen.  

One undeniable sign that the live music industry is in good health is the growing number of technology specialists that are developing products and solutions to improve event ticketing. Gordon Masson talks to a dozen companies who are focussing on ways to simplify ticketing, while generating additional revenues for professionals working in the live entertainment sector. TICKETHING Tickething had two main goals when it launched: to give fans a transparent and safe marketplace where they can securely buy and sell tickets between each other; and to allow event organisers and primary ticketing platforms to control the resale of their tickets. “We have developed a resale ecosystem that offers everything that blockchain secondary ticketing solutions offer, but without having to switch from current ticketing technologies and industry standards,” explains Tickething CEO Bence Töreky. Partners joining Tickething’s free API can set their own resale rules – personalised tickets, price capping, quantity limitations or whatever they believe to benefit their visitors and events. The company’s first API partner was TIXA Hungary,

while festival partners include Sziget, Balaton Sound and Volt. Among the safety features Tickething has developed are 100% money back guarantees and showing fans as much information about the seller as possible, such as profile pictures, numbers of successful previous transactions, face value of the listed tickets, etc. The company verifies sellers’ phone numbers, social media accounts and email addresses, and ensures that businesses and professional touts are prevented from trading on the Tickething platform. “We use AI technology to keep fraudsters away from the platform,” states Töreky. “This allows us to detect fraudulent transactions, whether it is a ticket seller or a ticket buyer, before the transaction goes through.”


KEYPZ Keypz is a UK-based start-up that is developing a platform to reinvent how ticket sellers manage fan verification with a data-driven platform-asa-service designed around the consumer. “There has never been more pressure from the media, fans and artists to prevent tickets from reaching the hands of touts,” says Steve Simpson, cofounder and commercial director of Keypz. “We are building a simple but smart solution that’s fairer for fans and dramatically reduces costs for ticket sellers. A win-win!” Fans register once with Keypz to access tickets from multiple partners and will already be verified by the time they get to the seller’s website, meaning faster ticket sales. The service prevents duplicate and false registrations, has a simple API to securely



SeatGeek's ability to allow fans to upgrade their seats when they are at an event is generating new revenue streams

connect fans to sellers and uses proprietary algorithms to prevent abuse by would-be touts, making for programmes that are repeatable, faster to set up and require less management, greatly reducing per-event costs for presales. “We want our innovation to be widely useful today, so we have been working closely with a handful of very experienced ticket industry insiders and established ticket sellers to ensure our service will work for the fans, the artists and the industry itself,” adds Simpson. Although the future of the technology has many more possible applications, the initial focus will be music and sport ticketing and, with trials targeted for early 2019, fans and potential partners are encouraged to register interest via the company’s website (Keypz.com).

ONEBOX Founded in 2010, Onebox is a Spanish ticketing company based in Barcelona. The company claims to have developed the first global system of ticketing sales and distribution, connecting event organisers and sales channels in a centralised sales system. Onebox technology allows event organisers to have complete control and autonomy of their events through powerful sales and analytics tools. The core business of Onebox is the ticketing

technology and 100% of its resources are dedicated to this purpose. The company’s growth shows a year-onyear 20% increment and in 2017, the 55 employees of Onebox were responsible for selling 7 million tickets, across more than 50 channels internationally, thanks to its open API. Those channels included Atrapalo, Ticketmaster, Ticketea and Entradas.com. Depending on the venue, Onebox offers a number of solutions for clients – a white-label sales web channel, multichannel distribution based on a centralised capacity system, physical box office, B2B sales channel for resellers, access control, and an open API that allows users to create their own online sales funnel. Among the company’s biggest clients are Athletico Madrid, FC Barcelona and the Spanish National soccer team, while in the music realm it services venues such as Palau Sant Jordi, Estadi Olímpic Barcelona and Madrid’s Wizink Center.

STAGER Stager says it is on a mission to liberate “event organisers all over the world from the daily hassle that comes with staging events and selling tickets.” It claims that money-hungry intermediaries and overheads evaporate when organisers use the Stager platform and therefore take control of their events. The fact that complete event production, from

booking to aftersales, is automated, gives Stager its competitive advantage – a plus-point that has attracted venues, theatres, festivals and nightclubs throughout the Netherlands. “They receive more revenue and spend less time to get a show on the road. This brings us to the ultimate goal we are striving for with Stager: more entertainment on this planet,” says Stager founding director, Mike van Gaasbeek. Stager’s event-production planning tools include a fully customisable, mobile first ticketing system that allows the organiser to set their own kickback to cover Stager’s handling fee. However, the system claims to replace personnel planning systems, production planning systems, website content management systems, customer relation management tools and loyalty/membership/ guest list management systems by integrating everything in one place. “Bundling all this functionality into one integrated system brings many added benefits. To paraphrase Aristotle: ‘The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.’ Another positive side effect is a vendor lock-in. The only way to go after using Stager, is back to the horror of having different systems tied together,” adds Van Gaasbeek.

WEEZEVENT Weezevent helps more than 150,000 event organisers and venues with a full whitelabel ticketing solution, access control with professional devices, and cashless technology. From 2008, Weezevent has sold more than 50 million tickets for all kinds of events: festivals, conferences, parties, concerts, fairs and huge sports events like Formula 1. By equipping 200 festivals, including Hellfest, Lollapalooza and Vieilles Charrues; professional football teams such as Paris Saint Germain and the UEFA European Championship; and numerous Red Bull events, Weezevent has proven how robust and high performing its cashless technology is. Expanding in Europe, Weezevent is hungry and ambitious, still with the same mind-set: we take care of the tech, you take care of the planning. Organisers own their own data and have access to all the tools they need to manage ticketing, accreditation, memberships, access control, payments, and soon their CRM strategy. This new solution will provide live and complete access to customers’ data collected



INNOVATORS over the years to organisers, providing them with a solution to promote their ticketing and implement a real marketing strategy throughout the year. Weezevent co-founder and CEO, Pierre-Henri Deballon, notes the evolving nature of live entertainment and states that the company’s future plan is to disrupt seated events with an easy and powerful solution. “With this new application, we’re catering to a need that is growing and fundamental to organisers nowadays. It is completely in our core strategy and philosophy to provide to seated events the same ability to manage and market their events,” he says.


Weezevent’s RFID passes can be easily scanned and checked

Ticketlight is Ticketline’s self-service ticketing system and allows complete end-to-end management and control of events for promoters, festivals, venues and more. Built on the company’s 30 years of expertise in ticketing and working in conjunction with its clients, Ticketlight offers a full, real-time reporting suite and provides clear and concise insight to help manage, promote and deliver events all in one place. “We have included many features to support ticketing for all event types, with a three-step event creation tool, an expansive, customised venue seat map tool, comprehensive reporting, and real-time scanning,” explains Ticketline head of marketing, James Lee. “Our real-time scanning features detailed





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Sell tickets, Online easy. www.stager.tickets



Talking Heads

Ben Bray TicketPlan

David De Wever PlayPass

live reports and you can scan tickets using the Ticketlight Barcode Scanning app available on iOS platforms. You can additionally produce whitelabel ticketing pages for an event’s website; branded e-tickets and confirmation emails; market your events easily, with integration to Mailchimp; and manage your event data to target your customers.” Whilst the system enables clients to have their own integrated white-label solution, Ticketlight users are also able to extend their marketing and sales reach by placing their event on sale on the independent Ticketline.co.uk marketplace. Available on traditional desktop, mobile and tablet devices,

Katie McPhee Eventbrite

Mike van Gaasbeek Stager

Ticketlight allows the full end-to-end management of ticket sales 24/7, even on the move. “Ticketlight is currently available in the UK, with opportunities being investigated for it to be deployed in other international territories,” adds Lee.

TICKETPLAN It’s been another busy year of growth and innovation for leading ticket insurance and protection firm TicketPlan, who provide refunds to ticket buyers if they are unable to attend events due to a variety of unforeseen circumstances.

Patrick Kirby Tixserve

Pierre-Henri Deballon Weezevent

The company announced in January 2018 that it had partnered with global insurance giant APRIL in order to bring its market-leading ticket insurance solutions to North America. “We carry out an enormous amount of work when entering new markets to ensure that our facilities meet all of the necessary local regulatory requirements,” explains group development manager, Ben Bray. “We know from our experience of working across numerous countries internationally that there is no one-size-fits-all solution within the ticket insurance and protection sector as


INNOVATORS each country has its own laws, regulations and interpretations. In the US, it’s even more complex as these regulatory requirements can vary from state to state. In partnering with APRIL USA, we are able to offer our market-leading ticket insurance solutions across all 50 states – within a regulatory model that is robust and compliant.” In yet another innovative development, TicketPlan has also unveiled a new GDPR-friendly, APIbased integration solution. “We always try to make the implementation of our facilities as simple as possible,” says Bray. “We had carefully monitored the evolving situation in relation to GDPR prior to finalising our integrated solution, but having gained a better understanding of the impact of the new regulations we were able to finalise our proposition. We are now delighted to be able to offer both integrated and non-integrated implementation models to our partner ticketing companies and prospective clients – whichever best suits their needs.”

SEATGEEK Originally founded as a secondary marketplace, over the past two years SeatGeek has upended the United States’ primary ticketing market with SeatGeek Open. SeatGeek’s approach to primary ticketing focuses on the open distribution of tickets through APIs, allowing artists, venues and sports teams to sell tickets directly to fans in places like Facebook, Snapchat and Airbnb.

Talking Heads

Russ D’Souza SeatGeek

Steve Simpson Keypz

The industry really took notice of SeatGeek’s momentum in April, when the company announced it would take over as the ticketing provider for AT&T Stadium and the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys – the most valuable sports franchise in the world. The Cowboys joined the NFL’s New Orleans Saints, NBA’s New Orleans Pelicans, and a handful of Major League Soccer clubs that had already signed on with SeatGeek. “For too long, artists, venues and teams have been very limited in how they can reach fans to sell them tickets,” said SeatGeek co-founder Russ D’Souza. “We’ve seen great momentum around our

James Lee Ticketline

open approach, not just with our partner venues and teams, but also in how much their fans have enjoyed the increased access.” Based in New York, SeatGeek now has offices across Europe, and recently hired an international general manager as the company puts more attention on growing globally. The company has an increasing number of clients in Europe, including a number of Premier League football clubs in England. “We are excited to see the industry moving in an open direction because it improves the fan experience while at the same time growing the business for artists, venues and team,” says D’Souza.



Stager’s app is becoming increasingly popular

OXYNADE Oxynade, a 100% white-label ticketing partner, offers an all-round ticketing system that is based on current top-notch technologies such as GraphQL, Node JS and React. Including a fully equipped back-office, box office and specialised features, the platform can cover the needs of a broad range of verticals. This allows partners in

the ticketing sector to grow their business and reach possibilities that were out of scope before. Having a white-label solution at its core, where the Oxynade solution can be customised as part of the clients’ own brand, turned out to be a real hit with clients. With new players like artists, promoters and even tour operators getting involved in ticketing, whitelabel solutions are becoming more and more popular and Oxynade aims to exploit this demand. Since Oxynade’s eTicketing as a Service (eTaaS) solution launched at the beginning of 2017, the company has expanded its portfolio with a slew of new clients, while the Netherlands, Germany, the Baltics, Hungary, Czech Republic and even South Africa are just a few of the countries where the technology has been adopted. In September 2018, Oxynade held its first eTaaS Summit, hosting close to 50 delegates from 14 different countries at its client Phantasialand’s amusement park near Cologne in Germany. The company reports, “Our goal was to give our attendees an inspirational experience and let them meet international like-minded ticketing individuals. From our point of view, we believe it was a success.”

EVENTBRITE Eventbrite, which launched operations in San Francisco in 2006 as one of the first online

ticketing providers worldwide, is a global ticketing and event technology platform, which powered millions of events in more than 170 countries in 2017. Since inception, the company has processed more than $10billion (€8.7bn) in gross ticket sales, providing creators of all shapes and sizes with tools and resources to seamlessly plan, promote, and produce live events around the world. Current customers include elrow, MJR, WOMAD, Tribeca Film Festival, Newport Folk and Jazz Festivals, Latin Village, and Vrienden van Amstel Live!. Eventbrite has acquired nine companies, including music ticketing powerhouses Ticketfly and Ticketscript, to further solidify its commitment to the independent live music scene, and in September 2018, it held an IPO, raising more than $200million (€175m) on the New York Stock Exchange. Katie McPhee, head of marketing for Eventbrite in the UK and Ireland, comments, “We were among the very first providers to introduce one-click event publishing to Facebook, mobile apps for keeping and scanning digital tickets, and a browser-based, self-service, drag-and-drop reserved seating system. More recently we have built an advanced RFID access solution with a cashless payments option, which is fully integrated with the Eventbrite platform.” The company’s partnership directory, Eventbrite Spectrum, now lists more than 100 useful API integrations, including with Salesforce, Mailchimp,


INNOVATORS and SurveyMonkey, and the company is continuously adding partners to its distribution network, which already includes Facebook, Instagram, Bandsintown, Spotify, SeatGeek, and others.

PLAYPASS Headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, PlayPass has developed a suite of RFID solutions that can provide clients with invaluable insight into the operational flow of their events. In addition to improving event access and facilitating cashless transactions, PlayPass technology tracks and displays the number of visitors onsite in real time, and can identify which brands and activations are of interest to each visitor, as well as what they purchase and consume. The RFID specialist lists Ticketmaster, Dice, Live Nation and AEG among its client list but a contract with Belgian football club R.S.C. Anderlecht is driving new expansion plans for the company, which recently secured €1.9million in new funding from Amsterdam-based Newion Investments. PlayPass co-founder and CEO David De Wever reveals that the company supplies Anderlecht fans with season tickets that also let them purchase merchandise, food and beverages utilising the cashless technology. “Our goal now is to go after other stadium clients,” De Wever tells ITY. “What’s nice about our Anderlecht contract is that we’re part of a full platform with a dedicated app built-in

for fans. That allows us to communicate directly with fans, as well as tap into a lot of data to help optimise the fan experience in the stadium.” With PlayPass implementations now spread across 20 countries, De Wever is confident that the venue and sports club sectors can help the company grow rapidly outside of the music festival market. “We’re going to concentrate on how we can help our partners increase revenues and improve fan engagement before, during and after an event,” he says. “Our focus will be in markets that we think will become key for PlayPass, like the UK, where we intend to enlarge our team and find more partners in the festival, stadium and venue markets.”

TIXSERVE Tixserve operates a white-label, self-service technology platform that enables existing ticket sellers for sport, music and other live events to replace paper tickets with secure and interactive digital tickets delivered direct to the smartphones of fans and patrons. Since its entry last year into the UK and Irish markets, Tixserve has focused on validating its solution with high-profile clients who own and

Tixserve has worked in partnership with Tickets.ie for Irish rugby matches

operate large sporting venues. One of its first ticket agent clients, Tickets.ie, found that some 50% of rugby fans opted to receive a Tixserve-powered digital ticket instead of a print-at-home paper version. Fans now have the convenience of doing app-to-app ticket transfers within the secure track-and-trace Tixserve ecosystem. Tixserve has also developed a new solution for distributing ticket allocations for highdemand games to clubs and other stakeholders. Its newly developed ‘light touch’ batch delivery solution means that ticket sellers can now trial and roll-out the Tixserve-powered digital ticket without the need to do a technical API integration with the Tixserve platform. Tixserve co-founder and MD, Pat Kirby, says, “The inevitable switch from paper to digital ticketing is gathering momentum, and existing ticket sellers must decide whether to ‘build or buy’ a digital ticket fulfilment capability.” Kirby invites International Ticketing Yearbook readers to avail of a free, simple-to-do, trial of the Tixserve digital ticketing solution. Contact info@tixserve.com for more info.


ARGENTINA Language: Spanish | Population (millions): 44.3 | Currency: Peso | GDP/Capita (US$): 20,900 | Internet Users (millions): 30.8 Smartphone penetration: 52.2% | Population % aged 15–24: 15.3 | Population % aged 25–54: 39.4 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 17 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 22

Local promoter DF Entertainment worked with All Access ticketing and Crowder to provide Lollapalooza Argentina fans with RFID wristbands for entry and cashless payment


rgentina has lurched from one economic crisis to another for decades, though as an otherwise urbane, cultured place, it has developed a fitfully impressive live business, in the meantime, as a key South American tour stop alongside Brazil and Chile, with superstar shows and its own Lollapalooza. The current climate, however, is not good: the peso has plummeted by half against the US dollar at the time of writing, driving the central bank to push interest rates up to 60% - the highest in the world. Inflation, meanwhile, is at 30%.

2013 to $85m (€74m) in 2018, though whether or not it did is not readily verifiable.

SECONDARY TICKETING EntradaFan launched in May 2015 as the first peer-to-peer ticket marketplace in Argentina, and it still operates. Viagogo is also active, and tickets for Ricardo Arjona, Shakira and André Rieu in Buenos Aires were the top events on its local site at the time of writing.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES PRIMARY TICKETING Time For Fun-owned Ticketek is Argentina’s dominant ticketing provider, with a market share of around 70% and up to 5 million ticket sales in a good year. Livepass, the local ticketing offshoot of Move Concerts, is another busy operator, as are TuEntrada and VisionOne Argentina’s TicketPortal. Other platforms, such as DF Entertainment’s All Access, focus on the events of a given promoter, in a country where most promoters tend to have a stake in the ticketing business. In 2017, Ticketek was embroiled in a highly public scandal after tickets for home matches of the national football team flooded onto the black market. A subsequent pitch awarded the contract to sell tickets for the national team to Livepass.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Online is the favoured channel among Argentinian consumers, although call centres and sales points survive for now in metropolitan areas. In August 2017, Motorola and Ticketek launched E-Ticket, a mobileticketing option allowing punters to download a QR code ticket that can then be scanned on entry to shows, festivals and football matches.

The days of Roger Waters playing eight shows at Buenos Aires’ Estadio River Plate are six years gone, although he can still run to a couple at the Estadio Único, as he is due to do in November 2018. Katy Perry, Foo Fighters, Ed Sheeran, Kasabian and Radiohead have also been through in the past year, and Lollapalooza Argentina rolls on, in spite of a rain-damaged 2018. But if the Argentinian currency problems persist, Latin American artists will be far easier to find for a while.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Until the recent round of economic turmoil, Argentina was generally considered to be South America’s best bet for unchecked live market growth, given Brazil’s recent economic and political troubles. Far smaller than its counterpart on the other side of the land mass, with a population of 44m, Argentina has been a very healthy market in recent years, but the live industry is used to a stop-start pattern, interrupted by currency controls and punitively weak exchange rates. Even in better times, sponsorship is necessary to underwrite big shows, and major promoters tend to have big brands on board to counter consumers’ limited spending power.

TAXES AND CHARGES VALUE OF MARKET In 2014, Argentina’s total live music revenue from sponsorship and ticket sales was slated by PwC to rise from $55million (€48m) in


Argentina abandoned its 21% VAT on concert tickets in 2006, helping to drive the country’s then-depressed live music scene to several years of solid success. That rate remains in place.



© Kylie Keene

Language: English | Population (millions): 24.7 | Currency: Dollar | GDP/Capita (US$): 50,300 | Internet Users (millions): 20.3 Smartphone penetration: 90% | Population % aged 15–24: 12.8 | Population % aged 25–54: 41.4 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 502 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 545

Frontier Touring partnered with Ticketek for the record-breaking Australian leg of Ed Sheeran’s ÷ tour


he live market in the land down under has been up-and-down in recent years, though there’s never a shortage of action. The summer period stretching across 2017-2018 featured stadium tours from Paul McCartney and Foo Fighters (both promoted by Frontier Touring, the former winning best international contemporary concert at the Helpmann Awards), and arena runs from Drake, Shawn Mendes and Muse (Frontier), Queen + Adam Lambert (TEG Dainty), Robbie Williams (Chugg), and Ariana Grande and Roger Waters (both Live Nation), among others. Adele (Live Nation) and Guns N’ Roses (TEG Dainty) swung through stadiums in early 2017 and Ed Sheeran pulled off something of a magic trick with his ÷ open-air tour, which was seen by more than 1.1 million people across Australia and New Zealand, according to its tour promoter, Frontier Touring chief Michael Gudinski. Midnight Oil, Lorde, Flume, and Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds were among the Australasian acts who mounted major, national tours in 2017. The international shows keep coming through 2018 with Taylor Swift, Elton John, Celine Dion, Bon Jovi, Katy Perry, Bob Dylan, Def Leppard, Florence + The Machine, Pink, Sam Smith, Cher, Mariah Carey, and many more booked in. The festivals space is much less easy to predict. With the four biggest touring fests all disappearing off the calendar in recent times (Big Day Out, Future Music Festival, Soundwave, Stereosonic), a slew of international brands were expected to test the market. International EDM brands Ultra Music Festival and Sensation arrived, and Live Nation’s Download Festival launched in Melbourne in 2018 (it’ll return in 2019 with an additional Sydney leg). China’s Storm was announced, then postponed, and a new date still hasn’t been confirmed. The inaugural Sydney iteration of snowboarder Shaun White‘s Air + Style Festival failed to get off the ground in July, and its operating company Moore Sports International went into liquidation. Consolidation is reshaping the landscape. In 2016, Live Nation, parent of Ticketmaster, acquired a 51% stake in Secret Sounds, which presents Splendour in the Grass and the traveling Falls Festivals. And in the same year, Paul

Dainty sold his Dainty Group business to TEG (parent to Ticketek) to create TEG-Dainty.

PRIMARY TICKETING Australasia’s ticketing industry is dominated by the big two: Ticketek and Ticketmaster. Behind them are a handful of significant independent companies along with scores of small-scale and DIY outfits competing for a slice of Australia’s billion dollar-plus live entertainment space, among them Moshtix, Eventbrite, QPAC, Ticketbooth, TryBooking and Ticketebo. Australia’s dollar has lost steam against the euro over the past year, though its economy is strong (according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the country hasn’t experienced a technical recession for more than 26 years). The country’s touring market is prone to fluctuations and many predict softer months ahead. “Ticket prices are paramount, and too many people are abusing their fans,” says Gudinski. Ticketing in general is a huge issue, with numerous discounting platforms offering last-minute, cut-price tickets to events. Indeed, Gudinski is convinced that ticket discounting is “a disease that will kill the business.”

VALUE OF MARKET The live market hasn’t returned to its 2010 peak. Live Performance Australia (LPA) reported that revenue grew slightly to AU$1.43billion (€906million) in 2016, the most recent period covered in its Ticket Attendance and Revenue Survey. During the period, 18.8 million tickets were sold to live events, up 1.2%. Rock, pop and hip-hop concerts, which fall under the “contemporary music” category, were down, and revenue from festivals fell sharply. The 2017 report was expected to be released in late September, but at ITY press time it had not been published and reps for LPA say it’s unclear at this stage how the market performed. The concert landscape is dominated by “the big four”: Chugg Entertainment, Live Nation Australasia, Frontier Touring, and TEG-



Dainty. Indie promoter MJR Presents, part of the UK’s MJR Group, operates venues and festivals, promotes more than 1,000 shows each year, and claims to have sold 200,000 tickets to Australian shows over the last twelve months.

SECONDARY TICKETING Rip-offs, the rogue secondary market, and bots are part of the national discussion. Companies like Viagogo are clearly in breach of the Trade Practices Act, says artist manager John Watson, who experienced serious issues with shady enterprise during tours by Midnight Oil, Jimmy Barnes and Missy Higgins. “The problem with enforcing these Fair Trading laws is typically that the company is based outside Australian legal jurisdiction. So until these companies start operating under our laws they shouldn’t be allowed to operate in our country at all. Their sites should be blocked and Google should refuse to take their advertising.” But there have been hints from Canberra that help is on the way. After years of persuasion from the live industry and consumer advocacy groups, Canberra is exploring a shake-up of the secondary market. Late in 2017, the Treasury invited submissions to a consultation paper, Ticket Reselling In Australia, which scrutinised scalping and the secondary space at both a state and national level. The federal government announced it was considering an outright ban on bots or a crackdown on reselling tickets for “major events.” Viagogo is so despised that it received a Shonky Award from consumer watchdog Choice in 2017 for “dodgy practices that tick off consumers.” “We are slowly winning the war against, specifically, Viagogo,” says promoter Michael Chugg. “Each week the state or federal governments are tightening up and bringing in laws. We just need to make sure the laws are worked by the authorities and not just window dressing.” The veteran promoter has been a vocal critic of rogue secondary platforms, though he reports “huge growth” in numbers coming to the website and socials for his company, Chugg Entertainment, to click and buy tickets. “It takes the pirates straight out of the mix,” he says. Twickets, the fan-to-fan face value ticket reseller, expanded into Australia in 2017 and was immediately embraced by the industry. In recent months, the service has worked on campaigns with the likes of 5 Seconds of Summer, Katy Perry, Celine Dion, Cher, Pink and Bastille. Secondary ticketing isn’t the industry’s only burning issue. Sydney’s lockout laws are a burden and an embarrassment, for anyone involved in live music in Australia’s most populous city. Based on a report from Liquor & Gaming NSW, lobby group Keep Sydney Open argued that 176 licensed premises had been shut down since the state government imposed its “draconian lockout laws” in central Sydney in February 2014, which include a 1.30am lockout on inner city venues and a cease-service from 3am – hindering the live entertainment sector and, of course, ticketing operations. Change might be on the way. The NSW government this year lifted its freeze on new liquor licences for venues that host live music and, inspired by other programmes operating in Amsterdam, Berlin, London and New York, Sydney’s lord mayor Clover Moore is building a panel of nightlife experts to help revitalise the city’s nightlife. The lockout laws “put the brakes on” Sydney’s night-time economy, she says. Musicians, live industry professionals, and advocates have spoken up about those issues in a string of hearings during a NSW Parliamentary inquiry on the music and arts economy, established in November 2017. Radio stations’ abuse of local content quotas, the closure of key live music venues, and a dearth of homegrown talent on streaming playlists are also heated issues. In March, the Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA), music rights society APRA AMCOS, and Commercial Radio Australia (CRA) agreed to work together to determine if noncompliance on quotas was the problem many say it is (music stations are required to play 25% local content under the Commercial Radio Code of Practice). The three industry bodies have agreed over a 12-month period to study playlist data and review it on a monthly basis to gauge compliance.


TAXES AND CHARGES With Viagogo consistently under fire from consumers and the live industry, the big two ticketing companies are getting on with business. Both are grappling with an image problem. Ticketek and Ticketmaster have both received Shonky Awards for “overcharging,” and Choice last year launched an investigation into ticket resellers that found Ticketmaster Resale could “leave consumers holding a cancelled ticket or hit with a large fine.” The ACCC has also scrutinised the ticketing giants in the past five years, and there have been legal issues around the controversial process of drip pricing. Maria O’Connor, MD of Ticketmaster Australia & NZ, counters, “Ticketmaster Resale is a legitimate, regulated, and Australia-based ticket resale marketplace that offers consumers high levels of protection and customer service.” Ticketmaster, she adds, “guarantees every purchase made on Ticketmaster Resale.” ITY asked O’Connor whether the ticketing giant’s image problem was a fixable one. “We work extremely closely with our clients to charge a fair, transparent, and competitive level of fee that reflects the service it provides,” she said. Ticketek did not respond to requests for comment.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Technology is facilitating an increasing number of transactions down under, and smartphones and tablets are emerging as the dominant platforms for all e-commerce, including ticketing. Independent ticketers say roughly 90% of their tickets are sold online (split 50/50 between personal computers and mobile devices). The remainder of sales are facilitated by telephone (5-6%), outlets (3%), and walk-ups (1-2%).

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Hip-hop is gaining traction in what is a market traditionally dominated by rock, pop, indie, and dance music. Country music is also a strong performer. The 2018 CMC Rocks QLD festival sold out in 30 minutes, and Chugg Entertainment boasted sell-out shows in Sydney and Melbourne with Luke Bryan, Darius Rucker and Kelsea Ballerini (who is married to Aussie country artist Morgan Evans). Australia’s leading pack of artists continues to shine at home and abroad and a new wave is breaking through, including Gang of Youths, Betty Who, Tash Sultana, Cub Sport, Mallrat, and King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Medium- to large-sized venues tend to opt for the exclusive ticketing rights model. The ticketing rights for large venues are sold to the highest bidder or, sources say, to the one with the most influential corporate relationships. Independent promoters are also concerned that two of the leading concert organisers, Live Nation and Dainty Group, are affiliated with the major ticketing agents. “It’s very hard for anyone else to break in,” notes Chugg. The highest bidders are typically Ticketek and Ticketmaster, which jointly account for an estimated 80-90% of Australia’s entertainment ticketing market and dominate the stadium, arena and commercial theatre space. According to Ticketek, it processes 23 million tickets (almost one for every Australian) for more than 20,000 events every year. It owns Sydney’s Qudos Bank Arena (formerly Allphones Arena) and provides ticketing services to neighbouring ANZ Stadium, and such venues as Melbourne’s Rod Laver Arena, Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Suncorp Stadium (also in Brisbane), Adelaide Entertainment Centre, Perth Arena, and Newcastle Entertainment Centre. “Australia continues to offer very strong market conditions for good operators,” notes Harley Evans, owner and managing director of leading independent ticketing agent Moshtix and The Ticket Group. Business is “really good” right now, he says. And the leading promoters “all seem to be kicking a lot of goals,” which says much about the climate of the market and their ability to adapt. “There is a strong, active, passionate audience of music lovers in this country. People like getting out.”


AUSTRIA Languages: German, Hungarian, Croatian | Population (millions): 8.7 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 49,900 | Internet Users (millions): 7.3 Smartphone penetration: 64% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.0 | Population % aged 25–54: 42.4 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 253 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 267

Nova Rock used the likes of Myticket.at, oeticket and other Eventim outlets in Europe for this year’s festival

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Most tickets in Austria are sold online, a trend that continues to grow, and print-at-home tickets make up the majority. The number of ticket purchases made via mobile devices is also constantly increasing.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Rock/pop remains the most popular genre, although classic rock and indie festivals like Nova Rock or FM4 Frequency have both added hip-hop to their respective line-ups to sell more tickets. German rap has been enjoying a renaissance over recent years in the German-speaking markets of Austria, Switzerland and Germany, and is commercially more successful than ever before. The festival line-ups in those markets are evidence of this. According to Neumann, while Eventim mostly sells tickets for international acts, there is a trend towards more local content. “About a third of tickets for the top 50 music events in rock/pop and folk music, in the first half of 2018, were sold for events with local acts. A band like Wanda that sells out the Stadthalle Vienna proves that there is huge potential.”

For the biggest shows, Viagogo remains the only relevant resale marketplace in the country. At the beginning of this year, two comedians from Germany and Austria sued the company for selling overpriced tickets to their shows. One core aspect of the lawsuit is the fact that the comedians’ promoter had explicitly banned the resale of tickets in its terms and conditions. It is hard to say whether Viagogo is feeling the pressure. The company maintains a notoriously low profile, hiding away in the tax haven of Switzerland. The size of Austria also has other implications. Most business is done in and around the capital, where 70-80% of tickets are sold.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Austrians are crazy about skiing. One of the country’s most successful musicians, a Schlager singer by the name of Hansi Hinterseer, is also a former world-cup skiing champion. “This year, our new co-operation with the Austrian skiing federation gave us a real boost in ticket sales for the world-cup skiing events in Q1,” Neumann says.

SECONDARY TICKETING Austria is a small market. Not many events sell out during the year, but the ones that do are bound to lead to secondary ticketing. Neumann explains: “The perceived relevance of secondary ticketing is influenced by the attractiveness of events, i.e. sold-out ones. There are already measures taken by artists and their managements, for example, Ed Sheeran’s personalised tickets, and strict access control.” He adds: “The number of players on the secondary market has not changed over the past twelve months.”

TAXES AND CHARGES Promoters pay 13% VAT on their ticket sales, and there are still many cities that charge the controversial amusement tax, which varies in price. Austria’s event hub, Vienna, however, isn’t one of them. A Viennese court recently ruled that Eventim’s print-at-home fee was unlawful. The company said that it would appeal, but may abstain from doing so, seeing that it has already lost all its previous appeals in Germany, where it was forced to scrap the controversial fee.


© Heimo Spindler


ustrian veteran indie promoter Alex Nussbaumer told IQ Magazine earlier this year that Austrian businesses still take pride in their independence. “You can still develop things based on quality rather than quantity,” he said. In that regard, Austria is similar to neighbouring Switzerland. Which may be the reason why, just like its neighbour, it hasn’t felt too much impact from the arrival of Live Nation and its subsidiary Ticketmaster in 2015; so far, the established ticketing agencies in the country have not been forced to relinquish much of their power. CTS Eventim, operating as Oeticket, reigns supreme in Austria. With Ticketmaster, the city-of-Vienna-owned Wien-Ticket, DEAG’s MyTicket, Culturall, and NTRY also making an impression in the market. Industry professionals ITY spoke to estimate that the country’s yearly ticketing business is currently worth €60-80million. Oeticket CFO Michael Neumann tells ITY: “In the first six months of 2018, we’d already sold as many tickets through our web shop as we did over twelve months in 2012. We’re excited to see what the rest of the year still holds for us.” The German live entertainment giant has been on a roll, breaking the half-billion euro revenue mark for the first time, in the first half of 2018. Austria is the company’s fourth biggest market behind Germany, Italy and Switzerland. Revenues generated from ticket sales and live entertainment activity in the first six months rose from €27m to €34m year-on-year. Unfortunately, Eventim doesn’t break its ticket sales down by market so exact figures aren’t available.


THE BALTICS Languages: Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian | Population (millions): 1.25 (EE) 1.94 (LV) 2.82 (LT) | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 31,800 (EE) 27,600 (LV) 32,300 (LT) | Internet Users (millions): 1.1 (EE) 1.6 (LV) 2.1 (LT) | Smartphone penetration: 56.7 (EE) 49.1 (LV).56.8 (LT) | Population % aged 15–24: 9.0 (EE) 9.4 (LV) 11.1 (LT) | Population % aged 25–54: 41.4 (EE) 41.8 (LV) 40.0 (LT)

Kraftwerk are just one of the many acts to visit the Žalgirio Arena in Kaunas, Lithuania, in 2018


n ticketing terms, the Baltic States are more Russian than Western, with the Kassir.ru-owned Baltic Ticket Holdings (BTH) driving the market in all three states. Infrastructures are modernising, and the range of choice available to the 6m inhabitants of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania continues to grow, with solid artist traffic from east and west, and hit-making local music scenes. Live Nation is present as Live Nation Baltics, based in the Estonian capital of Tallinn, and last year turned its majority stake into full ownership.

PRIMARY TICKETING BTH controls the market leaders in all three of the Baltic countries – Estonia’s Piletilevi, Latvia’s Biļešu Serviss, and Lithuania’s Bilietai.lt (and also rules the roost in Belarus with Kvitki). BTH CEO Jaanus Beilmann recently claimed that Piletilevi’s sales volume is growing at a rate faster than Amazon, 21 years after the ticketing company was formed to sell tickets for the Tallinn show on Michael Jackson’s HIStory World Tour. BTH sells 5.5m tickets a year across the three countries. In Latvia, Biļešu Serviss’s main competition is Biļešu Paradīze, while in Lithuania, Tiketa takes second place with a 40% share to Bilietai’s 50%.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Online sales and print-at-home tickets remain the main ticketing methods, with mobile growing at a rate of about 5% a year. In Lithuania, Tiketa reports that its app has been downloaded about 50,000 times in each of the past two years, and in-app purchases are growing at nearly 9% a year. Box offices aren’t dead yet – BTH alone operates 700 sales points throughout the region.

grew by almost 15% this year, according to Tiketa.

SECONDARY TICKETING As with many developing markets, secondary ticketing has not yet gained significant traction in the Baltics.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Western, Russian and domestic music are all popular, with local scenes showing strong growth. The festival scene has also expanded fast over the past decade, with major events including Positivus Festival in the coastal town of Salacgrīva, Latvia, which mixes Baltic music and big-hitting Western headliners such as The Prodigy and Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds; the dance-heavy Weekend Festival in Pärnu, Estonia; Granatos Live in Rumsiskes, Lithuania, where this year’s line-up included George Ezra, Rita Ora and Lithuanian up-and-comers such as Beatrich and GJan; and rock and metal event Devilstone in Anykščiai, Lithuania, which heavily features Baltic and Scandinavian acts, with just a smattering of acts coming from the US and Western Europe.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS With Scandinavia, Poland and Russia within striking distance, Baltic consumers are not a captive market, says Tiketa general manager Andrius Žiauberis, and they are becoming more prosperous and increasingly choosy. “We have noticed that ticket-buyers are becoming more and more selective in what to buy and where to go,” says Žiauberis. “The price of a ticket is not essential but the event itself and its quality are important, as they can easily visit other countries and bigger events.”

TAXES AND CHARGES VALUE OF MARKET There are no official valuations of the live music market in the Baltic States, though the combined market was estimated at around €70million a year in 2016, and in Lithuania, the number of live concerts


Lithuania and Latvia apply VAT of 21% to concert tickets, while Estonia charges 20%. Lithuania’s performing rights society LATGA and Latvian authors’ society AKKA/LAA levy a 6% tariff. Estonian authors’ society EAU charges 5%.


BELGIUM Languages: Dutch, French, German | Population (millions): 11.5 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 46,600 | Internet Users (millions): 9.9 Smartphone penetration: 66.2% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.3 | Population % aged 25–54: 40.0 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 254 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 270

in 2010 and local outfit Sherpa.be in 2014; the latter’s See Tickets division picked up a Paylogic business in Belgium as part of its acquisition of the Dutch group in April 2018. The venue chooses the ticketing partner in Belgium, so long-term agreements tend to define the market. As well as being the preferred partner of Live Nation Belgium where applicable, Ticketmaster holds the contract for the Palais 12 arena in Brussels and the Kursaal in Ostend, as well as smaller venues such as the historic La Madeleine in Brussels. Paylogic built its business in the open-air dance industry, first under SFX, then as part of LiveStyle, from whom it was acquired by See Tickets. Its long-term Belgian clients include Dour Festival and ID&T’s giant Tomorrowland event in Boom.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Belgium adheres to predictable modern ticketing preferences. “In Belgium, the most popular sales channel is online, with phone and outlet sales on the decline,” says Dieter Kraewinkels, managing director of Ticketmaster Belgium. “Print-at-home tickets are commonplace when purchasing online, but mobile tickets are increasing.”

VALUE OF MARKET PwC estimates the value of the Belgian live business at $322million (€261m).


Set to mark its 45th anniversary in 2019, Rock Werchter is one of the highlights of the Belgian live music calendar

The resale of tickets has been forbidden under Belgian law since 2009, thanks to the presence, for a time, of Live Nation Belgium boss Herman Schueremans as an MP in the Flemish parliament. That doesn’t apply to the neighbouring Netherlands, of course, and in 2016 a Belgian judge was moved to order Belgium’s Internet service providers to block access to three Dutch-based secondary ticket outlets – Topticketshop, Rang1Tickets.nl and Tickets België – following heavy touting of concerts by artists including Adele and girl-group K3.



ot a huge market, but a very busy one, Belgium has 11 million inhabitants, but fully 97% of them live in towns or cities, making for a highly engaged market with a particular yen for festivals. Its ticketing scene is busy, too, with powerful local and international interests fighting for position.

PRIMARY TICKETING Tele Ticket Service (TTS), founded in 1986 and owned by the Sportpaleis Group, serves in-house promoter PSE, the force behind the Night of the Proms events, as well as all the Sportpaleis venues. Those include Antwerp’s Lotto and Sportpaleis arenas, the Forest National arena near Brussels, the Ethias Arena in Hasselt and the Capitole concert hall in Ghent. Consequently, TTS is extremely hard to shift as the market leader in the northern region of Flanders, in which 68.5% of Belgians reside. It also handles tickets for the Proximus Go For Music service of Belgian telecoms network Proximus and works with Belgian white-label service Oxynade on the self-service Tele Ticket Easy platform. Ticketmaster and Vivendi have beefed up in Belgium in recent years: the former acquired the operations of French ticketer Ticketnet

Belgium does make its own pop stars, from Soulwax to K3 to Lara Fabian, but its live industry largely runs on other people’s, especially at the top end. “Of the artists who come to Belgium on tour, nearly all are international artists, who make up a greater majority than local acts,” says Kraewinkels.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Belgium was rocked by terrorist suicide bombings in March 2016, which contributed to a poor year, but the market has bounced back to its accustomed shape. That’s partly due to the fact that Belgium is incredibly well placed in the heart of Europe to catch tours (and fans) coming from all directions. Live Nation rules the roost in promoting terms, claiming the majority of the big shows as well as festivals including Rock Werchter and Pukkelpop.

TAXES AND CHARGES There’s a 6% VAT charge on ticket sales in Belgium, and service fees are typically about 5 to 20% of face value. Belgian promoters also recently won an action against performance rights organisation Sabam to reverse a heavy increase in concert and festival tariffs.



BRAZIL Language: Portuguese | Population (millions): 207.4 | Currency: Real | GDP/Capita (US$): 15,600 | Internet Users (millions): 122.8 Smartphone penetration: 42.8% | Population % aged 15–24: 16.4 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.9 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 133 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 169

Ozzy Osbourne took his farewell tour to Rio de Janeiro’s Jeunesse Arena in May 2018


razil is the largest live market in Latin America, with numerous domestic music scenes and a steady stream of international visitors. Politically and economically, there are problems, including the weakening of the Brazilian real, October’s wide-open presidential race, and reluctance amongst promoters to bring expensive international content into this febrile atmosphere. But the middle class is growing fast and the accelerating modernisation of this vast country’s ticketing market can only help to fulfil Brazil’s enormous potential.

Diego Barreto. “Our proposition has been to make this revolution happen in Brazil,” he adds, citing market-first tie-ups with PayMee Brasil, Apple Pay and WhatsApp. The market has experienced a general move online, and particularly into mobile. In major cities, e-tickets and mobile tickets now predominate, says Livepass director Mauricio Aires, who adds that 60% of Livepass’s online interactions come from mobile devices, while its marketing now skews towards social media, Google remarketing, and API partnerships. “As Brazil is a very large country, there are still many cities with a more traditional culture with paper tickets and more purchases at outlets or box offices, which means that the potential for growth is still very great,” says Aires. But even in those markets, things are already changing. “In less developed areas where the online rate was less than 5% in the near past, we are now seeing an average of 15%,” says Ferreti. “Even where buying tickets online is not so popular, we have cases where more than 80% of the tickets were sold online in a few minutes.”

VALUE OF MARKET PRIMARY TICKETING Brazil has 17 widely scattered cities of more than a million inhabitants, which is one reason why the country’s ticketing market has traditionally been highly regionalised. But in recent years, leading operators have worked hard to exert a national influence. Ingresso Rápido, T4F’s Tickets For Fun, and Move Concerts’ Livepass are among those with broader reach, while CTS Eventim, which arrived for the Olympics, continues to develop Brazil as a key growth territory. Another emerging force is StubHub which has a growing retail presence. As the main music city, São Paulo has the most competitive ticketing market, with numerous players slugging it out. Across the country, muscular regional operators are still much in evidence – “we have more than a 100 large- and medium-sized ticketing companies in Brazil and probably another thousand small ones,” says Eventim Brasil CEO Donovan Ferreti – but digital channels are gradually breaking down the barriers in a market that has clung for many years to paper tickets, call centres and real-life ticketing kiosks. Ingresso Rápido has had a digital spurt in recent years, in order to establish itself, by its own estimation, as the biggest ticketing platform in Latin America, claiming market leadership in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Florianopolis, Belo Horizonte and Salvador, with plans for Porto Alegre, Curitiba, Recife, Brasilia and Goiania, and for expansion into other parts of the continent. In terms of allocations, promoters appoint their choice of ticketing company for a big event, amid heavy competition, while smaller events tend to go with the venue’s chosen ticketing operator.

Research conducted by Ingresso Rápido puts the value of the ticketing market in major urban centres at R$15billion (€3.4bn). The operator also foresees a much bigger R$50bn (€11.5bn) prize for those who can open up the entire Brazilian market, including smaller cities and rural areas. That doesn’t include the potential for merch, hotels, flights, parking and other add-ons.

SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary ticketing is illegal but there is still plenty of it where demand dictates. “It’s always a big issue in Brazil, since we have a barrier in the law that blocks resale above face value,” says Ferreti. “Some companies that are offering this service are not based in Brazil, and are working at the margin of the local laws.”

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Tastes are broad in Brazil, and heavily regionalised domestic musical styles such as funk, samba, sertanejo, MPB, forró and pagode make the country musically self-sufficient. That said, megawatt international artists routinely visit an increasing roster of major and secondary cities.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Brazil has a law that guarantees a 50% discount on tickets for students and other groups. But promoters can restrict this benefit to 40% of sellable tickets. “It’s quite common to see events with low demand having this cap removed or being offered in very aggressive promotions of up to 60-70% discount of the face value,” says Ferreti.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Barely half a decade ago, Brazil was still holding fast to the old ways, but their relevance is declining in the age of mobile. Ingresso Rápido, for instance, whose online sales run at more than 70% now, compared to 20% just a few years ago, has latterly boosted its internal technology team from three people to 20 and cut back its call centre team from 80 to 14. “Just a few years ago, most tickets were printed, and technology was not quite integrated in this market, “ says Ingresso Rápido CFO


TAXES AND CHARGES The online convenience fees charged by ticketing companies have gradually fallen to 10% in some cities, though the rules vary from state to state, and some rates remain higher. In December 2017, São Paulo ticketing company Ticket360 was prohibited from levying a “withdrawal fee” to those who buy online and then collect their tickets in person, though the company said consumers had never been obliged to pay the charge.


BULGARIA Language: Bulgarian | Population (millions): 7.1 | Currency: Lev GDP/Capita (US$): 21,700 | Internet Users (millions): 4.3 Smartphone penetration: 47.6% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.6 Population % aged 25–54: 43.2


ulgaria is one of the emerging markets where exact figures relating to the live entertainment industry are still very hard to come by.

PRIMARY TICKETING What isn’t up for dispute is the fact that most of the country’s ticketing business is controlled by Eventim. Ticketportal.bg and Ticketmaster’s Ticketpro hold second and third place, and local players like Bilet.bg and Bgbileti.bg also take a wedge of the ticketing pie. According to Miroslav Emanoilov, MD of Eventim Bulgaria, “2018, so far, has been a good year for both live music, and for our company.” Events that performed particularly well include Hills Of Rock Festival, which featured Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, as well as concerts by Roger Waters, Sting, André Rieu, and local acts such as performers Dimitar Rachkov and Kamen Donev; singer Lili Ivanova, and violinist Vasko Vasilev.

the number of sold-out shows. This means there is currently no secondary market.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Most tickets in Bulgaria are still sold through the country’s retail network. However, the online segment is growing steadily year-onyear, especially in the capital of Sofia, where most business is concentrated. Therefore, while paper tickets still make up the majority of sold inventory, there’s a steady growth in print-at-home and mobile tickets. Both forms “will certainly increase their shares radically in the near future,” according to Emanoilov. Who added that: “Social media still has a lot of potential to grow [as a ticket-selling tool] as it is currently used mainly for small gigs and DJ parties.”

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Prices for events in Sofia are much higher than elsewhere in the country, and buying habits also differ. “Customers here heavily use the Internet to buy tickets for big international or local events and do not like to use the network of traditional ticket-selling points,” Emanoilov tells ITY.

TAXES AND CHARGES SECONDARY TICKETING Bulgaria is a small country with around seven million inhabitants. The number of big international names that stop by is limited, and so is

Ordering on Eventim.bg, fans can choose between postal delivery, personal collection, or print-at-home, all of which will cost them an additional €0.55 to €1.10. VAT on concert tickets is 20%.

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CANADA Languages: English, French | Population (millions): 35.6 | Currency: Dollar | GDP/Capita (US$): 48,300 | Internet Users (millions): 31.8 Smartphone penetration: 68.7% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.8 | Population % aged 25–54: 40.0 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 589 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 683

The biggest jazz gathering in the world, Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, will mark its 40th anniversary in 2019 by holding events throughout the city

personalised fan experience. Ticketmaster is also developing and exploring new features for Presence, including facial recognition technology through Blink Identity.

SECONDARY TICKETING StubHub is the resale market leader and backs every order with its Fan Protect guarantee. Ticketmaster is also involved in the ticket resale business through its Verified programme, where even tickets transferred or resold to consumers are 100% verified and issued in the purchaser’s name so that they cannot be counterfeited. “Craigslist and Kijiji in certain markets, along with independent brokers, make up the balance for places to get secondary market tickets,” says Alan Gelfand, founder and chief executive officer of Fair Ticket Solutions, which has introduced the authenTICKET platform that claims to give the live event industry the power to establish, retain and regulate control of every ticket in every format. While technology has definitely impacted the way tickets are issued, paper and print-at-home tickets still make up the majority, and there’s been criticism of attempts to force people to go completely mobile. “Fans should be able to use technologies that work for them but also opt out of technologies that restrict them,” said Campbell. “This is critical to a competitive marketplace, which benefits the interests of fans.”



hile attrition and addition continue for Canadian music venues and festivals, the country’s live music scene continues to be in good shape – which accordingly carries over to the ticketing market. “As the world’s largest marketplace, we sell one ticket every second, globally,” says Aimee Campbell, global head of public affairs for eBay-owned StubHub, which operates in more than 40 countries. “Canada is StubHub’s second-largest market globally for ticket sales.” Live Nation Canada is undisputedly the largest concert promoter, and annually promotes 1,300-1,500 shows in more than 200 venues in over 50 cities across Canada. Other important promoters include: Collective Concerts and Embrace Presents in Toronto; Evenko, L’Équipe Spectra, Greenland Productions and Neon Productions in Montreal; Paul Mercs Concerts in Vancouver; Invictus Entertainment Group in Penticton; ConcertWorks in Edmonton; and Sonic Entertainment Group in Halifax.

PRIMARY TICKETING Live Nation’s Ticketmaster Canada subsidiary remains the dominant player in ticketing, with a market share estimated by some to be 80%. Competitors include Ticketfly, Ticketpro and, in Quebec, Thepointofsale.com. In the last two years, TicketBreak and Eventbrite consolidated and, following Eventbrite’s acquisition of Ticketfly, assumed the Ticketfly brand. In 2018, Eventbrite also acquired. Vancouver-based ticket platform, Picatic. “New players in the market can spur innovation and benefit fans,” says StubHub’s Campbell. “The challenge today is making sure the biggest players in the ticketing space don’t use their market power to push out competition.” Ticketmaster introduced Ticketmaster Presence, which replaces paper tickets with digital passes, and claims that it can streamline live event venue operations; provide real time insights and analytics to venues; enhance security and protect against fraud; and allow for a


Ontario, with more than 14 million people, is Canada’s most populous province, and on 1 July introduced its Ticket Sales Act as a means to protect consumers through banning the use of bot technology and overhauling other areas of ticket selling. While backing the bot ban and the general sentiment behind the legislation, the live event industry has expressed concerns that aspects of it could have unintended consequences, including creating compliance challenges and decreasing consumer choice. One of the biggest complaints was the resale price cap of 50% above face value, which key players believe interferes with the principles of supply and demand and could boost illegal black market activity where fans can expect to pay more, with less certainty that their tickets are real. However, when the newly elected provincial Progressive Conservative government took over from the Liberals (which had introduced the legislation) on 29 June, it put a hold on the 50% cap portion of the law because there was no way to enforce it. “We have long argued that the best option is to educate consumers and raise awareness of how to buy safely online, and that it should be done in partnership and with collaboration between the government and the industry,” says Erin Benjamin, executive director of Music Canada Live, which promotes the concert industry’s economic, social and cultural benefits. Alberta is introducing ticket-selling legislation that will ban bots but have fewer regulations and won’t have price caps, while Manitoba and British Columbia are also examining their options.

TAXES AND CHARGES Ticketmaster charges a convenience charge and, for customers who order online or by phone, an order processing fee. These fees can total as much as 40% of the ticket’s face value, which has helped the likes of Ticketfly and its parent company Eventbrite, persuade customers to use their services.


CHILE Language: Spanish | Population (millions): 17.8 | Currency: Peso | GDP/Capita (US$): 24,500 | Internet Users (millions): 11.6 Smartphone penetration: 56.0% | Population % aged 15–24: 15.0 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.1 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 27 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 32

Pearl Jam called in at Santiago’s Movistar Arena in March 2018


tretching for 4,270 km down South America’s western coastline between the Pacific and the Andes, Chile completes the established continental trio of touring destinations alongside the bigger but economically wobblier Brazil and Argentina. By contrast, Chile is a model of stability, with a solid economy and the continent’s highest GDP per head, though the gulf between rich and poor is stark. With the highest internet penetration in South America, unsurprisingly Chile’s ticketing business is modern and its live calendar busy.

VALUE OF MARKET There are no published estimates of the value of the Chilean live music business, although PwC gives a conservative estimate on ticket sales of $27million.

most countries, with all the usual flaky goings-on. An entirely fake listing appeared in July 2018 for an Iron Maiden show at the Estadio Nacional de Chile in Santiago, in October 2019, complete with inflated ticket prices.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Promoters in Chile sell between 70-80% (and rising) of their tickets online, with the rest still going through physical outlets. Internet penetration overall is among the highest in South America at around 77.5% [source: Internet World Stats]. Mobile broadband penetration alone is higher still, at 86%, and is growing faster than that of any other country in the world, bar Greece [source: OECD]. Print-at-home has never gained traction, with most consumers preferring hard tickets and e-tickets.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES PRIMARY TICKETING PuntoTicket, Ticketek and Ticketpro are the key companies in Chile, where the Santiago is the main city for music by a significant margin. Of the three, PuntoTicket is the largest, again by some distance, holding the ticketing contracts not only for the state-of-the-art Movistar Arena but also the Teatro Oriente, the Teatro Cariola, and festivals including Lollapalooza Chile, Creamfields, Festival Primavera Fauna, Cosquin Rock, and Viña del Mar International Song Festival. By its own 2017 estimate, PuntoTicket holds about 70% of the ticketing market. Ticketek handles the historic and notably busy Teatro Caupolicán, among others, and Ticketpro is the ticketing partner of the Gran Arena Monticello at the Sun Monticello casino and hotel in Mostazal. All three offer online and physical sales, PuntoTicket through Ripley department stores and the Cinemark cinema chain, and all via Hites homeware stores. Competition in Chile is increasing, although teething troubles aren’t unknown. Leading local promoter DG Medios’s own ticketing platform, Superticket, went on sale with U2 tickets in June 2017 but ultimately handed the job to PuntoTicket due to well-publicised website problems.

The most sought-after tickets in Chile are often for Latin American artists such as Shakira, Chayanne, Rubén Blades, Morat, Juan Diego Flórez, and Silvio Rodríguez. But there is a substantial demand for English-language acts, with Depeche Mode, Roger Waters, and Bruno Mars among those passing through the Estadio Nacional de Santiago in 2017 and 2018, and plenty of others playing smaller venues. Locally, there’s pop, rap and cumbia. Much-tattooed, Chilean-born, pop-noir star Mon Laferte is a domestic artist capable of selling out the Movistar Arena. She won the Best Alternative Song award at the Latin Grammys for her single Amárrame, featuring Colombian rock star Juanes. Chilean psych-rockers Föllakzoid are worth a listen, too.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Foreign investment in Chile increased from $4.3billion (€3.7bn) in 2003 to $30bn (€26bn) in 2012, and the nation continues to find itself at the centre of interest for overseas investors. Indeed, INsports is set to host the third edition of the EuroLatam Sports Marketing Summit in Santiago on 26-27 November 2018 – an event that claims to be the leading B2B marketing event of cooperation between South America and Europe.

TAXES AND CHARGES SECONDARY TICKETING Viagogo is the prominent secondary channel in Chile, as it is in

VAT in Chile is 19%. Service charges on tickets tend to stand at around 15% of face value..



CHINA Languages: Mandarin, Cantonese | Population (millions): 1,379.3 | Currency: Yuan Renminbi (CNY) | GDP/Capita (US$): 16,700 | Internet Users (millions): 730.7 | Smartphone Penetration: 50.4% | Population Aged 15-24: 12.8% | Population Aged 25-54: 48.5% | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 179 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 228

example, a Q&A session with Linkin Park during their Chinese tour sold over 750,000 tickets. The trend of steep growth in events is expected to continue to fuel ticket sales. As an indicator of the country’s growing demand for entertainment, movie sales continue to thrive as China’s box office revenues grew by $2billion in 2017 to $8.6 bn. China continues to be the #1 movie market in the world and is on a steady climb as more and more cinema screens are built throughout the country. While there were only 38 foreign releases in China last year, they accounted for a whopping 46.2% of the overall box office revenue. Hopefully, the trade war with the US will not upset this upward trend for Hollywood. On the tourism side, the Chinese government has decided to put tickets for sale online for many of its most popular attractions from the Forbidden City to the National Museum. An estimated 70% of all tickets for major tourist attractions are now purchased online to eliminate queuing times.

PRIMARY TICKETING There are hundreds of ticketing choices, ranging from local to national. Almost all venues sell tickets at their own box office, and most are also available online through one of the popular vendors. The number of major players in online ticketing continues to rise, and currently includes: Damai (owned by Alibaba), Maoyan-Weiying (Tencent), Nuomi (Baidu) and Mtime (the in-house ticketing app for

AEG Presents partnered with ticket platform Damai to take Jessie J to the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai in September 2018


© 1073 studio


hina’s music market has experienced dramatic growth in the last year, with an astounding 35.3% increase, doubling last year’s growth rate, and propelling the country for the very first time, into the top ten global music markets. Streaming revenues rose by 26.5%, driven by how quickly the Chinese have been to embrace digital music, and led by Internet giant Tencent, which dominates the market with a 70% share. Tencent owns QQ Music, Kugou, Kuwo and NetEase, and after signing exclusive streaming licensing deals with Universal, Sony and Warner, the conglomerate is also spending a bundle on music piracy and conditioning the public into paying for digital tunes. Their strategy is to encourage fans to watch videos, sing along, and create their own music to share. Music has become the core of Tencent’s business, which has seen them build a “pan-music entertainment ecology.” With the forecast for continued growth in music, higher ticket sales to Tencent’s live events are expected. Event management companies are starting their own ticketing platforms to cater for their events. Major players include 31HuiYi, Huodongxing and Heimahui. With the number of annual events increasing exponentially from 100,000 just a couple of years ago to over 700,000 events in 2017, the three big Internet companies: Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent, are now seeing returns on the ticketing platforms they invested in. They also sell tickets to online events whereby fans buy a ticket to watch an event or part of it being streamed live. For


The number of concert halls in China is on the rise, with one such building, the Guangzhou Opera House, frequently named as the world’s most beautiful venue

Wanda Cinemas). 247Tickets, Piao, Piao88, Piaobuy, Mypiao, 228, SmartTicket and Tickets365 are all still players in the ticketing space. Paper tickets with holographic seals or barcodes are most often used for bigger events in order to expedite entry. There is a move towards using only electronic tickets at larger and newer venues. Festivals, multiday events and exhibitions still favour wristbands.

blocks of tickets to events. This practice will not stop until adequate legislation is put in place. Today, major secondary ticketing companies (some of whom could be considered scalpers) operate online and for a fee. They also, for a small fee, allow upgrades and exchanges, for people wanting a better seat or for those wanting to sit with friends, so they do provide a service. The biggest players include: Tking, Moretickets and Ferris Wheel.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES China has six cities with a population of over 10 million (Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, Tianjin, Chengdu and Guangzhou), and a further 12 cities with a population of over six million. Whilst these are ideal stops for touring international artists, in most cases, major promoters still only put on shows in Beijing and Shanghai. Smaller venues generally rely on their own box office sales, especially if the ticket price is less than CNY300 (€37).

VALUE OF MARKET While there is no official body that collects ticketing data for China, assumptions can be made on the basis of music sales. The overall value can be broken down as follows: Event Ticket Revenues (US$m): 5,812 Cinema Ticket Market Volume (US$m): 5,070 Sporting Event Ticket Market (US$m): 352 Music Events Revenue (US$m): 360 (Source: Statista) Live Music Market (US$m): 217 Live Music Ticket Sales (US$m): 158 (Source: private equity firms estimate)

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES The market consists of approximately 80% Chinese artists, 10% J-Pop/K-Pop artists, and 10% international.

SECONDARY TICKETING Ticket scalping is a time-honoured tradition in China. In the digital age, like elsewhere, touts use bots to snap-up tickets the minute they go on sale. They also do deals with promoters directly to purchase

CULTURAL ANALYSIS There are several interesting observations about the Chinese market: The live streaming of events has become typical, and usually takes place on mobile devices. For a small fee, a concert can be accessed online for 48 hours after it took place. China’s middle class continues to grow and to accumulate credit/ debt as purchasing power grows. There is a continuing demand for international cultural events, and just about everything is possible when it comes to events for which tickets can be sold, such as the live streaming of press conferences. It’s not just about selling tickets to traditional events anymore. While the one-child policy has been overturned to allow for up to two children, children are still spoiled, with the average child being doted on by six parents and grandparents, all eager to grant them their every wish. Teenagers are the most connected demographic, and are responsible for the vast majority of live and music purchases. They continue to have a (seemingly) unlimited amount of money to spend and are the fastest growing target market. Large blocks of tickets (as much as 80%) are removed from the on-sale, and are usually given to the officials responsible for helping with the realisation of an event. In many instances, these will be the best seats in the house. It is a time-honoured tradition that will not be going away anytime soon.

TAXES AND CHARGES Withholding tax for visiting artists is 20%. VAT is 17%, and an additional entertainment tax of 5-20% is also applied, depending on the type of event and price of tickets. Large ticketing companies charge 20-30% as commission for ticket sales while smaller ones charge 5-20%.



CZECH REPUBLIC Language: Czech | Population (millions): 10.7 | Currency: Koruna | GDP/Capita (US$): 35,500 | Internet Users (millions): 8.1 Smartphone penetration: 63.9% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.6 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 32 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 33

The O2 arena in Prague remains the most important venue for ticketing rivals in the Czech Republic


uch has happened in the Czech Republic, a century since the founding of Czechoslovakia and 29 years after the Velvet Revolution. But thanks to cheap flights, a busy concert schedule, and proximity to Germany, the capital city of Prague is one of the key concert destinations in Central Europe, both for artists and travelling fans.

PRIMARY TICKETING Regional operator Ticketportal takes the larger part of the Czech market, ahead of a pack that includes Ticketmaster in second place (following its 2016 acquisition of Ticketpro, whose systems are in the process of migrating to the Ticketmaster portal), and the Six Dotsowned TicketStream in third. Six Dots also owns small-show specialist Ticketon and classical and theatre platform Bohemia Ticket. Among the key prizes in the Czech Republic is the contract of the 18,000-seat O2 Arena, opened in 1994 and owned by PPF Group’s Bestsport. Ticketportal is the incumbent, and the arena keeps Prague firmly on the European circuit, with Ed Sheeran, Maroon 5, Eros Ramazzotti and local star Ben Cristovao on the calendar for 2019. Ticketportal also supplies its platform to many of the Czech Republic’s theatres and larger venues. Ticketstream’s traditional specialism has been music festivals and sporting events, though it is strong in small- and medium-sized shows. With its acquisition in 2016, Six Dots pledged to be the market leader in the Czech Republic by 2019, though the hierarchy currently remains intact.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Physical distribution is still relatively strong in the Czech Republic, though online invariably accounts for the majority of tickets, with print-at-home popular and mobile and e-tickets gaining ground. On the physical front, Ticketportal has more than 800 outlets, while Ticketstream’s 500-strong network includes Čedok tourist offices and Firo travel agencies. Among Ticketstream’s ticketing options, in addition to paper and print-at-home and virtual formats, is Ticketcard,


a loyalty card onto which holders can load up their tickets and swipe in.

VALUE OF MARKET The Czech live market was last year estimated at between CZK2.5billion (€97 million) and CZK3bn (€116m).

SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary platforms have gained ground in the Czech Republic over the years, particularly given Prague’s accessibility to ticket hunters from other parts of Europe. Viagogo, of course, is active – at the time of writing it was touting tickets for Elton John, Shania Twain and André Rieu, all at the O2 Arena.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES International tourers provide most of the bookings for the bigger venues, though there is plenty of local and regional touring talent. Ticketmaster reports that the majority of the tickets it sells are for international acts, though locally owned platforms offer plenty of shows from local artists.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS According to all the economic indicators, the Czech Republic has thrived in the transition from state socialism to the free market. But local wages remain low and the quality of jobs is in many cases poor, even as prices have risen to not far behind those of the wellestablished West. The average wage in the Czech Republic is on the increase – in Q4 2017 it stood at CZK31,646 (€1,228) – but tickets for a major international show at The O2 Arena typically fall in a very western European range, between CZK1,190 (€46) and CZK2,490 (€97).

TAXES AND CHARGES VAT on ticket sales is 15%, paid by promoters, and commission i s typically around 10-20%. In Prague alone, ticketed events with a capacity of 1,000 or more incur a 2.5% “cultural charge.”


DENMARK Language: Danish | Population (millions): 5.6 | Currency: Krone | GDP/Capita (US$): 49,900 | Internet Users (millions): 5.4 Smartphone penetration: 76% | Population % aged 15–24: 13.1 | Population % aged 25–54: 38.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 187 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 183

Currently undergoing a rebuilding programme following a catastrophic fire, KB Hallen will provide a boost to Copenhagen’s live entertainment scene


ike the rest of Scandinavia, Denmark is in a healthy place for live music, driven partly by new venues such as Copenhagen’s Royal Arena and the returning K.B. Hallen, its rebuild due for completion this year after a devastating fire. With festivals, healthy domestic talent, a busy calendar of international acts, and plenty of money to spend, Denmark is a vibrant market, especially for a country of just 5.7million inhabitants.

VALUE OF MARKET According to the most recent figures, the Danish live music business was worth DKK4.5billion (€600m) in 2016 (source: Dansk Musikomsætning 2017). That accounts for 60.5% of the Danish music industry, the live business having risen in value by DKK500m (€67.1m) between 2015 and 2016.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketmaster Denmark and the Copenhagen-based, Eventimowned, Venuepoint group’s Billetlugen are the key players, each taking a similar share of roughly 35-40% each. Copenhagen’s Royal Opera House, Billet.dk, Billetten and other smaller players fight over the rest.

SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary ticketing is illegal in Denmark, and The Danish Consumer Council took action in the spring of 2018 to keep ministers and the DCO (Danish Consumer Ombudsman) abreast of the development of the secondary market. “We co-signed the initiative and letters to the ministers along with 100 other stakeholders from the live entertainment industry,” says Venuepoint CEO Jens B. Arnesen. “There is a follow-up with the ministers in September 2018, and the hope is that regulation will protect all parts of the value chain.”

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES After a period of heady growth, mobile has pretty much captured the Danish ticketing market. “Mobile tickets constitute nearly all of the market,” says Jakob Lund, managing director of Ticketmaster Denmark and Finland. “The vast majority of tickets are sold online and on mobile, and that is particularly true for the most in-demand events. The rest are sold either via our call centre or outlets.” Ticketmaster’s print-at-home tickets, meanwhile, can be scanned from either a printed copy or directly from the screen of any device, and increasing numbers of customers – particularly younger ones – use its app to store their tickets. Ticketmaster also has imminent plans for ticket sales on social media. “We think that will make a big impact,” Lund says.

Copenhagen is virtually always on the European touring cycle, and its festivals – Roskilde, Smukfest, Copenhell, NorthSide, Tinderbox, and others – are a pretty hardy bunch, with well-mixed international and domestic line-ups. “Danes are fanatical about festivals, with big and small festivals taking place annually featuring a wide variety of both national and international acts,” Lund reports. What’s more, Danish talent – long eclipsed by that of Sweden and, to a lesser extent, Norway – is having a bit of a purple patch, thanks to young artists such as MØ, Iceage and Lukas Graham, as well as Trentemøller, Oh Land and Agnes Obel. “We have seen the Danish music scene booming over the past couple of years,” Lund says. “The demand for live entertainment, whether it be local and intimate or international and spectacular, is bigger than ever before.”

CULTURAL ANALYSIS The legendary venue K.B. Hallen is reopening as a technically updated and architecturally renewed, multifunction arena, after being rebuilt following a devastating fire a few years ago, with Billetlugen as its ticketing provider. “We are already experiencing a high demand for the venue, which will open soon,” says Arnesen.

TAXES AND CHARGES The Danish taxman hits promoters hard – a 25% VAT and 5.5% PRS charge take more than 30% off every krone of revenue, hiking up ticket prices in a country where everything is already on the expensive side. However, many venues and events in Denmark are non-profit and therefore exempt from VAT. Usually, ticketing companies charge a ticket fee somewhere between €3 and €5, with an additional fee on credit-card transactions.



FINLAND Language: Finnish | Population (millions): 5.5 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 44,300 | Internet Users (millions): 4.8 Smartphone penetration: 86.0% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.4 | Population % aged 25–54: 37.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 78 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 80


echnology is the biggest industry in Finland, accounting for more than 50% of the country’s exports, so it’s no surprise that the country that invented the first Internet browser and the SMS message has a modern, highly digitised ticketing business. Finland has more metal bands per capita than any other nation, and a strong domestic music scene in general, with plenty of homegrown, arena-filling acts.

PRIMARY TICKETING CTS Eventim’s Lippupiste, or Lippu, has the edge on Ticketmaster in Finland. The Finnish Trade Register’s latest numbers come from 2016, but they give Lippu 53% of the market to Ticketmaster’s 36%, while Tiketti takes 11%. Lippu has been focusing on customer service this year, according to Mari Hatakka, Lippu sales director, culture and live entertainment, and has a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of 72%. It has also sold 20% more tickets to summer festivals in 2018 than in 2017, and ascribes the difference to its in-house digital marketing agency. As has been the case for years, most of Finland’s biggest festivals give ticketing allocations to a couple of players, although some split three ways and some Live Nation events employ only Ticketmaster. The key venues usually have exclusive relationships, the biggest being

Promoters Fullsteam used Lippupiste to ticket Cheek’s sold-out shows at the Lahti Ski Jump venue in August 2018

Helsinki’s Hartwall Arena, which Ticketmaster has latterly won from Lippu, meaning the gap in market share between the two companies has been reduced. In this regard, there is drama on the horizon, with new ice hockey and live event arenas planned in Tampere (the Central Arena, which will be Finland’s biggest and will open in 2021), and Helsinki (the Garden Helsinki development, which promises to be the most advanced arena in the world and will have roughly 10,500 seats and over a hundred boxes). “The fight over future venues is going to be tough – these are pretty much must-win cases for ticketing operators,” says Hatakka. Helsinki’s Olympic Stadium, which has hosted concerts from Michael Jackson to One Direction, has been closed for renovation since 2016 but will reopen in 2019, also with its ticketing rights up for grabs.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Most tickets distributed in Finland are now e-tickets and mobile tickets, though there remains a healthy physical ticket culture, and both Lippu and Ticketmaster maintain outlet networks – Lippu has around 700 points of sale, Ticketmaster about 100. “Online is what most people prefer, and the share of mobile is growing as it is everywhere,” says Hatakka. “However, there are still a lot of people who prefer outlets and we feel it’s important to serve ticket buyers in all channels. We still sell hundreds of thousands of tickets through outlets.”

VALUE OF MARKET The value of Finland’s music sector in 2016 was €905million. Festivals and major concert events accounted for nearly 29% of that, and altogether live music was responsible for more than half of the total value [source: Music Finland]. Anecdotally, around 20m tickets are sold each year, with half upfront and half on the door.

SECONDARY TICKETING Ticketmaster’s Seatwave launched in Finland in September 2016, and Viagogo and StubHub also cater to the Finnish market.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Acts are far more likely to pass through Finland when Europe is getting along well with Russia, and consequently these are comparatively thin times for international visitors. However, domestic acts are strong – Sanni and Nightwish have the Hartwall Arena booked for later in the year, just as Roger Waters does in August – and festivals such as Ruisrock, Provinssi and Ilosaarirock all put together heavily mixed bills.


© Henri Juvonen

Ruisrock in Turku this year had a fleet of electric taxis that accepted only karaoke as payment, sponsored by clean-energy provider Fortum. In addition to toboggans and Molotov cocktails, Finland also invented Angry Birds.

TAXES AND CHARGES 10% VAT applies on ticket sales, and service fees vary between €1.50 and €4.50, plus delivery fees where applicable, and a 1% charge for paying by credit card.



FRANCE Language: French | Population (millions): 67.1 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 43,800 | Internet Users (millions): 57.2 Smartphone penetration: 69.1% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.8 | Population % aged 25–54: 37.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 875 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 907


verything that happens in the French live business inevitably takes place, to an extent, in the shadow of the events of November 2015, when 90 people were killed at the Bataclan as part of a wave of extremist attacks across Paris that claimed 130 lives. Security continues to preoccupy organisers and state agencies, so while visitor numbers and live revenues bounced back within a year or two, the implications of the attacks linger on. Equally, however, the festival market thrives, tours aplenty still come through, and consumer confidence, while lower this year due to the gradual cooling of the “Macron effect,” is stable. French ticketing, meanwhile, hasn’t dramatically changed its form since a year ago, but competition is hot, margins are fine, and online continues to chip away slowly at the French population’s paper-ticket habit.

PRIMARY TICKETING France likes a retailer-branded ticketing service, so alongside France Billet and Ticketmaster, among the leading French ticketing brands are familiar hypermarché names including Carrefour, E. Leclerc, Auchan and Cultura, as well as e-commerce giant Vente-privee. But, in practice, as well as powering market-leader Fnac Spectacles, Groupe Fnac-Darty’s France Billet acts as the white-label ticketing provider for Carrefour and Vente-privee, while Ticketmaster supplies white-label distribution channels for E. Leclerc, Auchan and Cultura. Taking this into account, France Billet claims around 45% of the market, Ticketmaster 25% and Vivendi’s Digitick 4% (source: Webloyalty). Discounted ticket operation Billetreduc also enjoys a

healthy web presence according to the same source. France is a keen proponent of the possibilities of la billetterie dématérialisée (paperless ticketing), with its implications for cashless, m-tickets and CRM. Electronic tickets, spearheaded increasingly by mobile ones, are now leading the way, but the market does remain more physically focused than most. Fnac-Darty alone has more than 540 stores in France, and more than 1,200 points of sale and pick-up locations, including a large network of digital in-store ticket machines (and online deals with Songkick and Deezer). Ticketmaster’s partnerships with superstores such as E.Leclerc and Auchan, meanwhile, give it more than 900 physical withdrawal points. Of the pure players, Digitick is the smallest, though Vivendi Ticketing CEO Rob Wilmshurst believes the development of a new shared international platform with UK wing See Tickets, as well as the parent group’s increasing strength in the French live business – particularly the festival sector – will give the ticketing arm a boost. “It could be better, and it will be better,” says Wilmshurst. “Vivendi, our shareholder, is investing heavily in live in France, so our French business will benefit from that. We are underway with a re-platforming project that will improve features, leading to increased client and customer service. We expect to succeed in France. Fees are lower than most territories, so efficiency is key. A common international platform is going to help us achieve that.” Other primary ticketing companies in France include self-service online sellers Weezevent, Placeminute and Festik. Vente-privee

Now jointly owned by AEG, the 16-year-old Rock en Seine Festival has found itself in direct competion with Lollapalooza Paris, in which Live Nation has a stake



The Sud de France Arena in Montpellier provides touring productions with an option for dates between Paris and Europe’s southern countries

operates a discount ticket service, Panda Ticket, in the vein of Billetreduc.com and Ticketac.com. UK-born, mobile-ticketing platform Dice also recently took its first baby steps in France, with launch venues including Le Consulat and Le Pop-Up du Label, home of the Pete the Monkey Festival.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Webloyalty France’s 2017 survey found that nearly 80% of French people visit online ticketing sites. A less decisive 55% actually buy their tickets there, and of those that do, many pick up paper tickets in person via a retail outlet. Promoters association Prodiss, incidentally, puts the number higher than that, suggesting that 74% of French people buy tickets online. “Our main way of selling tickets is online,” says Ticketmaster France managing director François Thominet. “Unlike many markets, paper tickets are still the most frequently used in France, followed by mobile tickets.” France is also said to lead the way in cashless solutions. As of last year, according to Weezevent, 90% of French festivals were cashless, and most of those were using Weezevent technology. Major sporting events are not far behind – according to PayinTech, 32 of the country’s stadiums are now cashless-compatible.

VALUE OF MARKET Each year in France, more than 58,000 shows take place and more than 20 million French people attend one. The live music industry in France generates somewhere between €1.3billion and €1.9bn, of which around €750m is in ticket sales [source: Prodiss]. Furthermore, 88% of them think the choice of live events in France is broad and of a good standard.

SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary ticketing is forbidden in France by a law that prevents anyone reselling a ticket without the event organiser’s permission. Nonetheless, secondary has been gaining traction, driven particularly by Swiss-based Viagogo’s cross-border sales, with tickets for big shows routinely jumping promptly into the secondary channel at inflated prices. Last December, France’s General Directorate for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) launched a broadside at Viagogo, ordering it to cease alleged “deceptive marketing practices” including drip-pricing, reselling tickets above face value for publicly subsidised events, and misrepresenting to consumers the number of tickets it actually has for sale in order to give the impression of scarcity. All three practices, if proven, put Viagogo in breach of France’s Consumer Code.


Prodiss also launched an initiative called #FanPasGogo in January, aimed at combatting speculation on concert tickets, likewise setting its sights particularly on Viagogo and alleging that the site shields professional touts armed with bots. Primary ticketers, however, deny that there is any indication that bots are in large-scale use in France. One individual was discovered earlier this year attempting to buy 1,000 Rolling Stones tickets, apparently manually, using 164 different credit cards. Secondary ticketing is nonetheless widely condemned across the French business, with Live Nation’s Seatwave removing French concert tickets from its offering even before it announced it would be shutting down its European secondary operation. Sites such as Zepass and TicketSwap allow fans to sell on tickets at face value or less and are permitted to do so by an exemption in the law allowing ‘occasional’ resale.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Ever since the imposition in 1994 of a 40% radio quota of French-language songs, domestic music has had a particular advantage in France – even if the quota had to be reduced to 35% in 2016, in response to complaints from stations who couldn’t find enough new and worthwhile French music. Nonetheless, French acts remain very popular in concert, as do English-speaking ones, and national tastes follow predictable European lines: pop, hip-hop, EDM, rock.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Concert organisers were angered this summer by a government memo suggesting festivals and other mass events could in the future be charged for the costs of any law enforcement unrelated to terrorism. In the case of Eurockénnes, the festival in the east of France that blew the whistle on the proposal, such a move could inflate its security bill from €30,000 to €254,000 – an increase of nearly 800%. Since the Bataclan attack, security costs across the industry have spiraled, and payouts from the Fonds d’urgence au spectacle vivant (Emergency Fund for Live Entertainment), set-up by a consortium of state-run industry bodies, have dwindled. Another cultural habit in France is ticket buyers visiting physical outlets to collect tickets they have bought online – a policy heavily encouraged, historically, by Fnac, which used the ticketing business as a way of driving footfall to its stores.

TAXES AND CHARGES VAT often applies to concert tickets, albeit in several bands depending on the type of event and the number of shows. Collection society SACEM levies a charge of 8.8% of the ticket’s face value, and the French tax on shows is a further 3.5% of face value.


GERMANY Language: German | Population (millions): 80.6 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 50,400 | Internet Users (millions): 72.3 Smartphone penetration: 67.1% | Population % aged 15–24: 10.1 | Population % aged 25–54: 40.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 1,717 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 1,825

© Christoph Eisenmenger

FKP Scorpio use their in-house ticketing operation to sell tickets for their multiple festivals, including Hurricane in Scheeßel


ccording to the most recent figures released by the German promoters association, bdv, the country’s events industry generated sales worth €4.99billion between July 2016 and June 2017. This represents a very significant 31% increase compared to the last set of results published in 2013. But as the association’s president Professor Jens Michow pointed out at the time: “The study shows that despite the significant increase in sales, the total number of tickets sold declined from 120.6million (2013) to 113.5m in the period investigated. It also demonstrates that the sales growth is largely due to increased ticket prices and a higher visit frequency, and not increasing visitor numbers. Artists and event organisers must give this some thought.”

PRIMARY TICKETING Germany is home to the ticketing company that has been dominating Europe for years, and business for CTS Eventim, isn’t slowing down. In January, the industry giant was valued at more than €4bn after its share price rose to almost €42. A price that climbed even higher in June, reaching €44 per share, the highest since the company went public in 2000. Eventim has been consistently attracting record numbers ever since, exceeding annual revenues of €1bn for the first time in the company’s history, in 2017. And in the first six months of 2018, group revenues of more than €0.5bn were reported, another record for the company. Ticketing remains their most dynamic growth segment. In 2017, Eventim sold 48.9m tickets through its digital and mobile sales channels, which is an increase of 11.9%. It attributes this growth to its core markets in Europe as well as new operations in Brazil and Scandinavia. Combining data for all systems operated by CTS Eventim,

over 250m tickets were sold in 2017, including 100m cinema tickets, and 150m tickets for more than 240,000 live events. Unfortunately, the company fails to break down sales by country. However, Eventim did suffer a slight setback in August, when the German High Court ruled that the company’s print-at-home fees were unlawful. This led to shares plummeting to their lowest price in one-and-a-half years, but the company was quick to reassure shareholders that scrapping the print-at-home fee would only have a minor financial impact. “The ticket orders addressed by the judgment only account for approximately 5% of the total number handled by Eventim.de. In total, they represent sales revenue of around €1m – and therefore a mere thousandth of Group revenue,” the company wrote in a statement. Estimates vary but the industry professionals that ITY contacted all suggest that at least half the German market is controlled by Eventim. The company that seems most capable of challenging the market leader is Ticketmaster, especially since Live Nation opened its GSA offices in 2017. However, seeing the number of tickets for high-profile Live Nation events that are still sold through CTS channels, the behemoth still looks to be way ahead of any of the competition. Arndt Scheffler, founder and head of white label eCommerce ticketing service and former Eventim manager, tells ITY that the country’s real number two is Reservix (based in scenic Freiburg), which has been establishing itself in the market over the last 15 years through its B2B solution that allows clients to run their own ticketing businesses on the Reservix platform. Opinions vary, though. Other promoters report that Reservix’s dominance is limited to the south of the country, and that Ticketmaster has scaled the ranks to sit at number two, thanks to the wealth of



© Jeremy Deputat

Ticketmaster and a pre-sale by Telekom sold out all 75,000 tickets within minutes for Eminem’s Hannover show, promoted by Live Nation

events it gets from Live Nation. Reservix declined to give an assessment of the market in Germany and its place in it, but pointed towards its official profile, which states: “Reference projects and Reservix customers are Theaterhaus Stuttgart, SC Freiburg [football club], Table tennis World Championship, Wise Guys, Hessischer Rundfunk, Central German Broadcasting, Hessentag 2017, Biathlon World Cup, Sziget Festival, and around 7,000 other organisers in Germany and Central Europe. This includes organisers from the fields of concerts, sports, theater, tourism, cities, municipalities and trade fairs as well as artists, management companies and agencies.” According to Scheffler, the days of top acts selling out during pre-sale are over, “at least for now. That holds true for the big arena and stadium tours, as well as festivals.” He suggests that the reasons for this are manifold: “Bad weather of previous years, the fear of terrorists, overpriced tickets here and there, a soccer world cup year, or simply a certain form of saturation, are probably the main reasons.” As far as companies that offer white-label ticketing solutions are concerned, Scheffler’s own company seems to be doing well, and is growing organically. Whilst others – such as Paylogic and Ticketscript – have been sold to See Tickets/Vivendi and Eventbrite, respectively. “To sum it up,” says Scheffler. “The ticketing market is silently consolidating, as the power of the giants dominates the little innovators, whose existence isn’t necessarily threatened as long as they stay creative and discover and occupy the niches that are created all the time.” Then there’s MyTicket, DEAG’s in-house online ticketing system. DEAG promotes around 4,000 concerts and events each year, for which it sells more than 5m tickets. The company recently increased its stake in MyTicket AG by buying shares from Starwatch Entertainment, the music and live entertainment arm of Germany’s ProSiebenSat.1 Group. Both Starwatch and ProSiebenSat.1 helped DEAG establish MyTicket during its start-up phase. DEAG now holds 75.1% of MyTicket, with another German media giant, Axel Springer SE, taking the remainder. In October, MyTicket became the first ticketing agent in Germany to allow payment via Amazon Pay.

SECONDARY TICKETING The country’s main resellers include StubHub and its parent company eBay, Viagogo, Eventim’s FanSale, and ticketbande. It


appears to be near impossible to gauge the market share of each major contender. Of all these offerings, FanSale is the only one to cap resale prices at 10% over face value, in order to cover the flat-rate commission fee that Eventim charges the buyer. A blue logo on tickets depicting a handshake indicates that it is being sold at, or below, face value, with an additional green logo that indicates that the ticket has been verified.

TAXES AND CHARGES The amount of tax paid on tickets depends on the genre. VAT of 7% is currently applicable for music, and 19% for sporting events. No VAT is charged for charitable events. Sybil Franke, CEO of the Velomax Berlin Hallenbetriebs, reports that “The box office fee is about 10% in general, alongside other fees such as service fees, mobile fees, Internet fees, public transport sharing, charity etc.”

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Franke also says that, “Single box offices are almost extinct in Germany. The big ones are surviving, and those belonging to ticket systems, or connected to big venues that have ticketing bonds in their contracts, or online shops from artists. “We had to close our box office at Max-Schmeling-Halle last year after 20 years of operation because it wasn’t commercially capable anymore,” she tells ITY. “People buy online [now] and also via social media-integrated shops.” The favourite ticket format in Germany is still the paper ticket printed from a Boca printer – the so-called system ticket that is printed in box offices and call centres. Next in popularity is the print-at-home ticket, whilst mobile sales are growing fast.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Pop, including Germany’s proprietary genre – Schlager – is still the most popular, followed by rock and hip-hop. In third place, cross-over, urban, and festivals in general attract large numbers, followed by sporting events, and then comedy and cabaret. “The German market is slower than other markets,” Franke explains. “Germans are rather conservative in terms of additional purchases such as catering vouchers, parking, merchandise, fast-lane pre-orders etc. The [average] German [fan] buys a ticket, and that’s it.”


GREECE Language: Greek | Population (millions): 10.8 | Currency: Euro GDP/Capita (US$): 27,700 | Internet Users (millions): 7.4 | Smartphone penetration: 59.5% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.7 | Population % aged 25–54: 42.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 112 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 114


he vast majority of live music consumed in Greece, around 85%, is homegrown, with the most popular genres being metal, hard rock and dance. That being said, last year, some very high-profile artists – such as Foo Fighters and Sting – added Greece to their touring itinerary, “which was fantastic for the country’s live entertainment scene,” says Stefanos Kakarantzas, CEO of Ticketmaster Greece.

PRIMARY TICKETING Since last year, a new ticketing player has entered the market: Public.gr, which as well as selling online, also operates 35 or so HMV-style shops around the country. Despite this new contender, Giannis Paltoglou of Detox Events, the largest promoter in the country, believes that Viva.gr and Ticketmaster remain on top. There are no overall figures available for the Greek market. It’s very fragmented, with lots of small promoters and no central representing body to track sales. The majority of tickets are still collected at sales outlets, but legally these are more like entrance vouchers than traditional tickets.

SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary market activity in the country remains negligible, as hardly any event sells out these days, and there’s a reason for that: the country’s population has been (financially) drained by the austerity measures imposed on it by the EU in recent years.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Kakarantzas explains that “the majority of [Ticketmaster’s] tickets are sold online and via box offices.” Last year, web sales dramatically increased as a result of the government introducing incentives to use debit cards, in a bid to cut down on tax avoidance associated with cash transactions. He adds, “In terms of ticket sales, international artists generate over half of the total tickets sold in the live entertainment market. The most popular genres are rock, pop and electronic dance music.” According to Paltoglou, around 90% of Detox’s inventory is sold online, and the rest at physical POS locations. And, while “the Greeks love hard-copy tickets,” he says, the most popular format is print-athome, which makes up around 70% of the total tickets sold.

TAXES AND CHARGES VAT charged on tickets remains high at 24%. The Greek performance rights organisation gets 7%. Service fees vary between 2% and 3% of the ticket price – although ticketing companies have started charging 4% for music events. On a more positive note, the 5% city tax has now been scrapped.

Outdoor is over. Get ready with eps! barrier systems | seating | site material

info@eps.net | www.eps.net


HONG KONG Languages: Cantonese, Mandarin, English | Population (millions): 7.1 | Currency: Dollar | GDP/Capita (US$): 61,400 | Internet Users (millions): 6.1 Smartphone penetration: 76.1% | Population % aged 15–24: 10.4 | Population % aged 25–54: 44.7 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 89 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 112

© Kitmin Lee

The xx visited AsiaWorld Expo in February 2018, where Ticketflap were the local ticketing partner


ome high-profile, secondary ticketing cases have made front-page news locally in 2018, prompting anger amongst the public and debate at the legislative level. This year has also seen several new venue spaces in the small-capacity range open, providing some much-needed infrastructure options for event organisers.

“The platform provides cryptographically-secure, real-name tickets, and it’s been really encouraging to see more organisers listening to their fans and making use of the technology available to limit the secondary market’s potential impact.”

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES PRIMARY TICKETING HK’s primary market is dominated by four players – the traditional big three: HK Ticketing, Cityline and Urbtix, along with specialist digital platform Ticketflap. New entrants continue to enter the market with limited success to date, including StubHub’s troubled launch as AsiaWorld-Expo’s (the city’s major event venue) exclusive ticketing provider. When details of their deal leaked to the press, promoters universally fought back, boycotting the venue until concessions were reached on original plans. The result to date is StubHub’s white-label platform, which has suffered from system tech and teething issues since launch. Smaller, alternative platforms including Hkclubbing.com, Pelago and Art-mate wrestle for market share with Eventbrite. Live Nation is increasingly active in the market with further moves expected soon. The company has recently trialed its Canadian DIY ticketing platform, Universe, for ticketing locally. Recently, HK Ticketing decided to migrate to the Softix platform, operated by Australia’s TEG Group.

SECONDARY TICKETING As already mentioned, a slew of secondary ticketing-related headlines hit the front pages this year, elevating secondary ticketing issues to the national media and legislative council agenda. Chief executive Carrie Lam has promised a crackdown by looking to raise punishments for ticket touting, which is already a criminal offence in Hong Kong . Calls from law-makers and fans to tackle reselling and sales quotas remain, with more organisers turning to digital platforms as a result. “Our system was built very much with security and checks in place from the start to address ticket touts,” says Ticketflap’s CEO Mike Hill.


Digital and mobile ticketing platforms continue to gain traction, with HK’s high penetration of mobile phones per capita (248% according to OFCA’s latest records) a driver in it being the consumers’ preferred method of purchase. However, many of the older, established venues remain locked in exclusive deals with ticketing companies that only provide physical ticketing options, frustrating fans with anachronistic processes and additional fees that include postage.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Local and regional (especially Mandopop, K-pop and J-pop) are the most popular types of music events. The festival and international EDM space continues to grow in terms of volume of events, despite a question mark over the true market size.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS In an increasingly competitive landscape, the audience is often seen as difficult to predict, and sales cycles remain, by and large, weighted towards the final stages of a campaign. Nick Willshire, managing director of Entertaining Asia and Hkclubbing.com, says, “Hong Kong remains a city of last-minute purchasing, and with the increase in bars, restaurants and clubs, and the competitiveness of nightlife events, there is a growing variety of options.”

TAXES AND CHARGES Ticketing platforms typically charge a per-ticket fee of between HK$7-11 (€0.8-1.2) plus payment processing. There are further charges related to the delivery of physical tickets with the traditional big three ticketing companies. Hong Kong has no government sales tax on tickets.


HUNGARY Language: Hungarian | Population (millions): 9.9 | Currency: Forint | GDP/Capita (US$): 29,500 | Internet Users (millions): 7.8 Smartphone penetration: 54.7% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.0 | Population % aged 25–54: 41.9 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 50 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 58


ungary’s authoritarian government under prime minister Viktor Orbán has attracted international censure for its stance on migrants – the very act of helping refugees has been criminalised, and dissenting NGOs hit with a 25% tax. The country’s live entertainment business is on the up, if anything – wages have risen by 10% since 2010 and deprivation has nearly halved – but it is not unscathed. In June, the Hungarian State Opera House cancelled 15 performances of the musical Billy Elliot after a right-wing media campaign attacked the show as a propaganda tool for homosexuality, prompting a collapse in ticket sales.

PRIMARY TICKETING Interticket’s Jegy.hu brand remains the ticketing market leader, and is also one of the companies behind Budapest’s governmentsupported Blockchain Competence Centre, a professional and educational hub providing assistance to businesses and the government about blockchain. Ticketpro was acquired by Ticketmaster in 2017, and while it remains under its own established brand, it is the key portal for Hungarian Live Nation shows. Ticketportal, strong in Slovakia and the Czech Republic, is also present in Hungary, as are players including the online-only Tixa, which focuses on indie promoters and club shows. Budapest’s Sziget Group, meanwhile, operates its own ticketing platform and helped to pioneer cashless payment systems. This year, Sziget (including the Gourmet, VOLT, Balaton Sound and monster Sziget festivals) integrated entrance and payment systems into one chipped wristband, using Cardnet’s Festipay technology. Previously, ticket holders have been given a separate payment card on entry.

VOLT Festival in Sopron, like its sister event Sziget Festival, attracts fans from around the world

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Internet and physical retail tend to have a predictable generational appeal in Hungary, and mobile, too, is making its presence felt. “It is hard to draw the line here but certainly the shows aimed for the younger generation are sold more online, and the other way round,” says Ticketportal Hungary managing director Zoltán Antal. “Digital is getting stronger each year, but still box office is strong enough, depending on the customer behaviour of the target group, so we must still keep them.” Genres, too, display different sets of behaviour, with electronic tickets more liable to sell well online than rock music, though Antal suggests that may again be related to the age of the fans.

VALUE OF MARKET There are no published estimates of the value of the Hungarian live business.

SECONDARY TICKETING Fan-to-fan e-ticket marketplace Tickething is working to develop the resale market in Hungary, partnering with the Sziget Group and supplying its API to local online service Tixa. The start-up majors in transparency and fraud protection and is planning to make international moves. “Fan-to-fan resale is not necessarily an evil activity, which is why we invite event organisers and primary ticketing system providers to join our API and set their own resale rules according to their own preferences,” says Tickething CEO Bence Töreky.

Budapest is overwhelmingly the main live city in Hungary and a major stop on the Central European circuit, with a strong domestic scene to boot. Budapest’s primacy is reinforced by sheer numbers: it has 3m inhabitants in its metropolitan area, while the next three biggest cities, Debrecen, Szeged and Miskolc, have fewer than 850,000 combined. Powerful festivals in the other regions challenge the capital, however. “Some of the festivals are very strong, like Balaton Sound in Zamárdi or Volt in Sopron,” says Antal. “But for promoters who want to make one big show in Hungary, there is still no real option to do it elsewhere than the capital city.”

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Budapest has a thriving start-up scene, with accelerator programmes, co-working offices and numerous public and private investors in technology. “In the last couple of years, a lot of effort and investment has been made in the local start-up scene from both the private sector and the government,” says Töreky. “The local market is rather small, which is why most of these start-ups aim for the international markets from day one.”

TAXES AND CHARGES Hungary has the highest standard rate of VAT in the whole of Europe at 27%, though better deals are available to promoters under the right circumstances. Open-air festivals over a certain size – including Sziget, which drew 452,000 in 2017, following an all-time peak year of 496,000 in 2016 – pay at a rate of 18%. Promoters below a certain turnover can also claim exemption.



INDIA Languages: Hindi, English | Population (millions): 1,281.9 | Currency: Rupee | GDP/Capita (US$): 7,200 | Internet Users (millions): 374.3 Smartphone penetration: 25.3% | Population % aged 15–24: 17.9 | Population % aged 25–54: 41.1 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 86 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 124


ndia is still working on developing its concert habit, but shows by Ed Sheeran, Justin Bieber, and The Chainsmokers, last year, and Zayn Malik, in summer 2018, have done no harm, and this huge nation’s festival offering is also broadening. The ticketing market for live music inevitably piggybacks on the far larger movie ticketing business, and consequently, while the live music industry is a relatively nascent concept in India, its ticketing has been digital from birth.

The Road To Ultra Festival tapped into India’s flourishing demand for dance music events when it visited Mumbai

PRIMARY TICKETING Bigtree Entertainment’s 19-year-old BookMyShow has a virtual monopoly of the online ticketing market in India, having started in cinema ticketing and broadened out into sport, theatre, concerts and events. A report by Delhi-based analytics company Kalagato suggests the platform, headquartered in Mumbai, has a 78% market share. However, mobile payments giant Paytm has latterly pushed aggressively into the space, acquiring a majority stake in ticketing platform Insider.in, last year, and has since sold over a million tickets for more than 8,000 live events. Paytm’s movie ticket business, recently bolstered by the addition of TicketNew, a Chennai-based online ticketing platform, shifted 52million tickets in 2017, with a target of 100m this year, buoyed by its loyalty scheme. BookMyShow sells an estimated 10m cinema tickets per month. The market leader last year took a 75% stake in Pune-based DIY platform Townscript, which provides ticketing and planning services to workshops, conferences and exhibitions, among other events. It has also launched itself as a producer, staging a “re-imagination” of Disney’s Aladdin in Mumbai, Delhi and Hyderabad, and its Jukebox download service offers music as a reward for booking tickets. Other players include Ticketgenie and cricket specialist Kyazoonga.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Selling online in India tends to mean selling via mobile. There are around 500m Internet users, of whom 300m are using smartphones, and about 180m people transact online. In a country of 1.3billion people, there is still clearly plenty of headroom. As it stands, tickets for events are almost always bought online, with most going via mobile apps and mobile sites.

VALUE OF MARKET FICCI-EY’s Reimagining India’s M&E Sector report, published in March 2018, put the 2017 combined revenues of the Indian events industry at INR65.2bn (€801m), and predicts that will stand at nearly INR110bn (€1.37bn) by 2020. Concerts are a small part of that total, but they are expected to grow to 17% over the next two years.

It is important to take care when predicting vast, imminent growth for the Indian entertainment market based on the country’s huge population. As BookMyShow CEO Ashish Hemrajani put it in a recent television interview: “Only the top 10% of this country can afford anything, and they control 80% of the wealth. The bottom 40% of this country controls only 5% of the wealth. How are you going to sell them entertainment? How are you going to sell them payment systems? That guy doesn’t have food to eat.” All the same, the middle class is growing fast, and medium and small cities show rapid growth in entertainment consumption. While more than two-thirds of India’s population live in rural areas, there are 46 cities of more than a million inhabitants, and it is said that 30 Indians move from a rural to an urban area every minute. BookMyShow has recently experimented with pop-up venues in a bid to deal with the country’s lack of proper performance spaces.

SECONDARY TICKETING With live music in India in its early days and very few shows selling out, secondary ticketing is not yet an issue.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Festivals such as Sunburn in Goa, Magnetic Fields in Rajasthan, Enchanted Valley Carnival in Maharashtra, and Ultra India in Delhi – to follow imports such as EDC and Sensation – all add to India’s burgeoning reputation as a festival territory, particularly for EDM. Bollywood playback singers are the local stars, while Western pop acts such as Sheeran and Bieber seem to find a market wherever they go.


TAXES AND CHARGES Taxes on entertainment events vary in India depending on the state, though a nationwide goods and service tax (GST), introduced a year ago, has simplified tariffs. Now, Indian-language theatrical performances, including concerts, attract GST only if they are priced at INR500 (€6) and above. Before the exemption, GST at 28% resulted in falling attendances and scores of cancelled shows. An additional service tax stands at 15%. Ticketing companies charge promoters between 4% and 8% of the ticket price, with a 2% charge to the consumer.


IRELAND Languages: English, Gaelic | Population (millions): 5.0 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 75,500 | Internet Users (millions): 4.1 Smartphone penetration: 73.8% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.8 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.2 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 154 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 185

© Eva McGreal

Ticketmaster Ireland sold the tickets for Arcade Fire’s April 2018 visit to the 3Arena


he top end of the Irish live market has had a slightly mixed summer, as one-man stadium-filler Ed Sheeran sold a recordbreaking 405,000 tickets for nine shows, while other megastars such as Taylor Swift, Billy Joel and the Rolling Stones failed to sell out, amid suggestions – by Festival Republic’s Melvin Benn, no less – of offputtingly high ticket prices. Still, it’s a far cry from the long years of recession, and the Pope himself made some history when 400,000 tickets for his 26 August mass at Phoenix Park were allocated in 48 hours in June.

PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketmaster is intimidatingly strong in Ireland, handling both of the country’s biggest promoters, Live Nation/MCD and Aiken Promotions, which means most of the key venues, most of the big shows, and most of the notable festivals. Live Nation operates Dublin’s 3Arena as well as the city’s Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, The Olympia, The Gaiety, Electric Picnic and Longitude, and Sheeran promoter Aiken operates Vicar Street, Live at the Marquee in Cork, Live At The Iveagh Gardens and Harvest Country Music Festival. Ireland’s largest independent ticketing company is Tickets.ie, which processes more than 2.7million tickets annually for over 6,000 events. In addition to the Gaelic Athletic Association and Connacht Rugby, the brand focuses on club-level music and, at the other end of the scale, stadium and green-field shows. Tickets.ie owner Oshi Software’s High Demand Platform (HDP), a custom cloud-based ticketing system, handled the Pope’s visit, and under test conditions can sell 100,000 tickets in ten minutes. Given the power of Ticketmaster in Ireland, Oshi is building its software offering and its international business. “We are repositioning ourselves as the experts in scale – large, high-demand events and complex events,” says Oshi CEO John O’Neill. “The plan is to have the HDP platform open for other promoters when they have big on-sales.” UK-based ticket search engine TickX is also available in Ireland, while Futuretix.ie has a sizeable business with its ticketing operations in horse racing and rugby.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Online – desktop, mobile and app – accounts for the majority of Irish ticket sales in Ireland, and most tickets are print-at-home, with a significant number of physical tickets sold to walk-up customers.

VALUE OF MARKET The most recent research shows that the Irish economy, north and south, makes €1.7billion a year from live entertainment, as every €1 spent on tickets generates a further €6.06 in additional spending [source: Fáilte Ireland/IMRO]. 3.7m people attended live entertainment events across Ireland between March 2015 and March 2016, and a further 280,000 came from overseas.

SECONDARY TICKETING Ireland is particularly engaged in the secondary ticketing debate, having approved new legislation that will ban all sales of sport and concert tickets at above face value, while also banning ticketing bots. However, not everyone in Ireland is against Viagogo and its peers. Limerick senator Maria Byrne called for plans to outlaw for-profit ticket resale to be axed, saying hundreds of jobs could be lost if Viagogo decides to relocate its Irish operations.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Dublin and Belfast – one or the other, and often both – are firmly on the list of must-visit cities on any major tour of the British Isles. Ireland also has its own strong circuit of well-loved domestic acts, many of which, in common with homegrown comedy performers, can pack arenas.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS The prevalence of outlet sales varies greatly by genre. EDM fans in particular are said to account for a disproportionate number of cash sales.

TAXES AND CHARGES The service charge on tickets is typically 12.5%, which includes any taxes and is capped at €6.85.



ISRAEL Languages: Arabic, Hebrew | Population (millions): 8.3 | Currency: Shekel | GDP/Capita (US$): 36,300 | Internet Users (millions): 6.5 Smartphone penetration: 71% | Population % aged 15–24: 15.5 | Population % aged 25–54: 37.2 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 31 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 35

© Amit Giron

Expo Tel Aviv will host 2019’s Eurovision Song Contest


srael’s had a relatively slow year for shows after the boom of 2016 and 2017, and sales are down a little, with the cycle of international shows in a quiet phase and 15,000-capacity shows notably few. “After two explosive peak years it’s relatively quiet, so many are attending shows or festivals in Europe,” says promoter Hillel Wachs of promoter 2B Vibes. “But I’m confident next year will bounce back to last year’s level of international shows.” In the meantime, new entrant Ticketmaster has been gathering market share in an environment hitherto ruled by Eventim, and Tel Aviv still remains, perhaps, the Middle East’s best bet for a mad night out.

Live music contributes the vast majority of music industry revenues in the Middle East and North Africa (source: Mideastmedia.org).

SECONDARY TICKETING The Knesset outlawed ticket scalping in Israel in 2002, though the law applies only to “unlicensed persons.” Viagogo clearly considers itself licensed, and at the time of writing was offering tickets to Tel Aviv and Rishon LeZion shows by Omer Adam, Alanis Morissette, Scorpions, Shlomo Artzi, Brian Wilson and others.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES PRIMARY TICKETING The three main players in Israel are Eventim, Ticketmaster and local operator Kupat Tel Aviv. Eventim has owned the market since 2011, when it was responsible for bringing modern ticketing to Israel, but last year, Live Nation and Ticketmaster decided the time was right for its own office, acquiring local promoter Bluestone Group. Backstreet Boys and Alanis Morissette have been on the Live Nation schedules this year, and the promoter has also launched Israel’s first pop festival, August’s Wow Festival in Rishon LeZion, with Jason Derulo headlining and Rita Ora dropping out in June. Also in evidence are various box offices and local operators. Kupat Tel Aviv has plenty of local repertoire in addition to international names such as the Harlem Globetrotters, British comedian Jimmy Carr, and Julio Iglesias.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Mobile and online are the key channels for Israeli ticket-buyers, though call centres and box offices are still in operation. Print-at-home is the most common ticket type.

VALUE OF MARKET The live music market in Israel was worth US$33million (€28m) in 2015, and is projected by PwC to grow to US$37m (€32m) by 2020.


Heritage rock acts and Western stars generally play well in Israel, as do EDM, Mizrahi pop and hip-hop.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Israel is constantly under threat of a cultural boycott due to its government’s stance on Palestine. Lorde was the most recent high-profile artist to cancel a planned show in Tel Aviv, describing herself as “an informed young citizen” but adding, after her cancellation, “I’m not too proud to admit I didn’t make the right call on this one.” Roger Waters, Lauryn Hill and Elvis Costello have all boycotted Israel over its treatment of the Palestinians in recent years, though plenty of others have come. Local promoters urge acts to visit and make up their own minds. Competition among local promoters is fierce, but all the same, ticket prices are sometimes double those of the US, owing to high production, transport and freight costs, and a lack of ready-made infrastructure. According to Bluestone’s Guy Beser, a show at Tel Aviv’s Park Hayarkon has to sell around 40,000 tickets to cover costs, and the audience for even the biggest act is likely to top out at 50,000 or so.

TAXES AND CHARGES VAT in Israel is 17% and there is a ILS5 (€1.25) handling fee added to tickets purchased online.


ITALY Language: Italian | Population (millions): 62.1 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 38,100 | Internet Users (millions): 38.0 Smartphone penetration: 63.2% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.7 | Population % aged 25–54: 42.2 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 589 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 678

“People appreciate being able to buy complementary services with their ticket, such as parking or a pre- or after-show dinner,” says Lionetti. “Unfortunately, Italian regulation doesn’t make it easy to sell combined products.”


Bologna’s Unipol Arena hosted four nights of Roger Waters’ Us + Them tour in April 2018

Precise figures on the value of the Italian market are hard to come by. The last official report dates back to 2015, when Italy’s live music sector was worth €415million. However, PwC’s latest Global Entertainment & Media Outlook states that ticket sales in 2017 amounted to €563m, while live music sponsorship added a further €165m to value the overall live music market at €728m.



taly has played out its secondary market convulsions more publicly than most markets, with leading players touched by exposés, hammered with heavy fines and, in market-leader TicketOne’s case, redeemed on appeal. The market itself was up in 2017 compared to the previous year, and remains a key European destination.

PRIMARY TICKETING CTS Eventim’s TicketOne has been the market leader in Italy for more than a decade. Indeed, Eventim enjoyed ruling the Italian ticketing market so much, it has recently decided to take charge of the promoting business too, snapping up Vertigo, Friends & Partners, and D’Alessandro e Galli (Di & Gi) in a five-month spending spree between September 2017 and February 2018. In April, it added Vivo Concerti to that portfolio. Besides its dominance of the music sector, where big sellers have included Lorenzo Jovanotti, Zucchero, Antonacci, Caparezza and Cesare Cremonini, TicketOne operates 2,000 physical outlets, and sells tickets for many of the teams in football’s Serie A, B and C, as well as F1, MotoGP and Superbike. The launch in November 2017 of Ticketmaster’s own Italian operation, headquartered in Milan, brought to an inevitable conclusion the long-term partnership between TicketOne and Live Nation. Daniel Bei was announced as Ticketmaster Italy managing director in June 2018. Best Union, co-owner of promoter Barley Arts, also operates VivaTicket, and last July it acquired rival BookingShow, which has more than 1,000 ticket centres in sites including record stores, bookstores, travel agencies and clubs. Both brands continue to operate. “It’s too early to tell whether 2018 will be a good year for the live market,” says TicketOne CEO Stefano Lionetti. “What we can say is that TicketOne has maintained its market leadership despite the entrance on the market of Ticketmaster and the efforts of other competitors.”

A crackdown on rampant secondary ticketing by the Italian Competition Authority (AGCM) made international headlines in 2016 and resulted in €700,000-worth of fines last April for secondary platforms Viagogo, MyWayTicket, Live Nation’s Seatwave, and eBay/ StubHub’s Ticketbis, all for failure to provide complete ticket information to customers. The scandal also enveloped TicketOne, although in a remarkable turnaround, a €1million fine for allegedly failing to take precautions to prevent tickets from getting into the hands of touts was overturned in March by the regional administrative court of Lazio. The court accepted TicketOne’s claim that it has “always operated with utmost care and diligence, and that its business conduct did not favour the secondary market” and ordered the fine repaid, plus costs. Live Nation also admitted that it had passed tickets to Viagogo. Boss Roberto De Luca has recently used the vibrancy of the secondary market to justify a move into dynamic pricing. Meanwhile, promoter Claudio Trotta, of Barley Arts, has vehemently campaigned to have resale outlawed and even orgainsed the No Secondary Ticketing conference in 2017, which attracted delegates from around Europe.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES The leading genres are pop and rock, and Italian and international acts are equally potent crowd-pullers, though local performers tend to tour intensively while big international stars go for the single big show.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS In November 2017, the Italian Senate passed a new law, Act 4652, recognising live music as a “fundamental component of the country’s cultural, artistic, social and economic heritage.” Among the implications of the law are long-term plans to renovate and upgrade venues in smaller towns and to redress the geographical imbalance in the supply and demand of live shows.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Online sales in Italy grow year after year, though the Italian public retains a fondness for paper tickets, and they still like to walk up. TicketOne has had success with its app, and events such as theatre shows now chalk up 70% of their sales online, but still, unique and personalised fan tickets remain popular. Tickets are still sold through bars, newsagents and other physical outlets, and print-at-home, mobile and e-tickets are growing fast as e-commerce takes off across the board.

TAXES AND CHARGES The broad rate of VAT in Italy is 22%, but concerts and other live entertainment benefit from a reduced rate of 10%. The 2018 budget extended the rate to intermediaries such as production and suppliers. Barley Arts declined to renew an exclusive agreement with TicketOne last year, objecting to an industry trend of rising charges and heavy taxes. The promoter has experimented with a blanket 15% charge through VivaTicket, with home delivery the only surcharge.



JAPAN Language: Japanese | Population (millions): 126.5 | Currency: Yen | GDP/Capita (US$): 42,800 | Internet Users (millions): 116.6 Smartphone penetration: 47.8% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.6 | Population % aged 25–54: 37.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 1,610 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 1,747

The twin Summer Sonic Festival events in Osaka and Chiba will mark their 20th year in 2019

dynamic pricing for “concerts, sports, theme parks, events, etc,” as well as targeting ancillary revenues in hospitality, delivery services and car parking.

SECONDARY TICKETING Currently, Japan does not have any legislation that outlaws the resale of tickets, but it does have ordinances against ticket reselling around event venues. The flaw in this policy, however, is that it does not cover online transactions. But a bipartisan group of politicians is currently working on a new parliamentary bill to outlaw secondary ticketing ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. Ticket Pia’s parent company launched the Tiketore face value exchange platform in 2017. Elsewhere, there are numerous resale outlets including TicketStreet, Ticket Ryutsa Center and Ticket Camp, while many fans source tickets through Internet auction sites such as Yahoo! Auctions and Rakuten Auction, and mobile apps like merkuri. Viagogo also operates in Japan.



s the host of the next Olympic Games, in 2020, Japan’s ticketing market is set for a bit of a shake up as politicians and regulators look to shore up any loopholes that might see Olympic tickets changing hands illegitimately. As the second-largest market in the world for recorded music, Japan, unsurprisingly, is also a powerhouse in live entertainment where promoters are enjoying rude health. But despite a huge population throughout the country’s four main islands, touring acts tend to concentrate around two metropolitan areas: the Kanto area, home to the country’s two largest cities, Tokyo and Yokohama, which accounts for around 40% of all performances; and the Kansai area around Kyoto, Osaka and Kobe, which accounts for a further 20%.

PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketing enjoys a symbiotic relationship with Japan’s vast networks of convenience stores, where in-store machines are linked to ticketing agencies’ online platforms. These machines use thermal till receipts that are commonly swapped for actual tickets on entry to a venue. Ticketing in Japan is a triopoly controlled by Ticket Pia, e+ and Lawson HMV Entertainment. Of these, Pia is the oldest and largest, operating deals with convenience store chains 7-Eleven, Circle K/ Sunkus and Family Mart, the latter of which used to have a deal with e+. The dominance of these three giants has been challenged in recent years by the likes of self-service ticketing provider Peatix, which leans heavily on social media to entice event organisers to use its services. In mid-2018, Pia announced a joint venture with Yahoo! Japan and Mitsui & Co. to launch Dynamic Plus, an initiative that intends to roll-out


Japan’s live entertainment industry hit record numbers in 2017, according to the latest edition of the annual Live Entertainment White Paper. While the market shrunk slightly in 2016, largely because of a shortage of available large venues, the business bounced back in 2017 to reach record high revenues of ¥513.8billion (€3.95bn). According to the 13 companies and associations that compile the report, the recovery was largely attributable to the reopening of the Saitama Super Arena (37,000-cap.) and Yokohama Arena (17,000-cap.). Indeed, ticket giant Pia is building its own 10,000-capacity arena in Yokohama to try to boost the local live entertainment market.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Small events in Japan rarely employ ticket agencies, tending to sell tickets on the door or via direct reservations. But when the capacity grows to the mid-hundreds and above, ticketing agencies inevitably become involved. The perceived shortage of major venues has forced event organisers to be creative when it comes to the buildings they use, and a lot of Japan’s growth in live entertainment is a result of the use of unconventional venues such as galleries, cafés and various rented spaces.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Buying a ticket to an event in Japan can be a Herculean task for anyone living outside of the country. There are a number of websites explaining how to actually purchase Japanese event tickets, but given that none of the major ticketers offer websites in any language other than Japanese, the process can be tricky, and is further complicated by the fact that credit cards issued outside of Japan rarely work and tickets are not delivered abroad.

TAXES AND CHARGES Convenience store ticket machines include a selling commission of ¥216 (€1.66), a system fee of ¥210 (€1.61) and a ticketing fee of ¥105 (€0.80) per ticket including VAT (total ¥525/€4.07). A typical breakdown of administration fees includes an agency commission of 8%, plus a paper cost of ¥10.5 (€0.08) per ticket.




Languages: Luxembourgish, French, German | Population (millions): 0.6 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 106,300 Internet Users (millions): 0.6 | Smartphone penetration: 91% Population % aged 15–24: 12.2 | Population % aged 25–54: 44.3


hankfully for anyone working in the live entertainment business in Luxembourg, the country is more like an ideally placed European hub than a self-contained market, with audiences for events coming from three neighbouring countries, as well as the Grand Duchy itself. Indeed, by mid-2019, it is estimated that the frontalier commuters who make their way into Luxembourg every day from France, Germany and Belgium will breach the 200,000 mark. In terms of live entertainment, the country has one major venue, Esch-sur-Alzette’s 6,500-capacity Rockhal, and a trio of clubs that host international acts – den Atelier and the Rotondes cultural centre in Luxembourg City, and the 1,100-capacity Rockhal Box. But between them they punch well above their weight, drawing up to 500 shows a year and welcoming hordes of visitors from other countries to concerts and shows. Luxembourg is also the base for entertainment insurance specialists Circles Group, which offers ticketing cover among its services.

PRIMARY TICKETING Rockhal and den Atelier each operate their own ticket platforms, though inevitably, they also sell through agents in France, Germany and Belgium, with the likes of Eventim and Ticketmaster acting as distributors for events in Luxembourg.

SECONDARY TICKETING Viagogo et al, tend to appear when A-list tours visit. “There was a notable increase in Viagogo activity this year compared to last year, but that’s because of the number of big acts who have played at Rockhal this year,” reports the venue’s marketing manager, Thomas Roscheck.

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INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS Luxembourg’s domestic talent accounts for only a tiny proportion of its shows. Incoming German, French and Englishlanguage acts account for almost all of Luxembourg’s musical entertainment – Bullet for My Valentine, MC Solaar, Christine and the Queens, Kylie Minogue, Katie Melua, and The Prodigy were all coming to Rockhal at press time.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Roscheck highlights the importance of the frontalier workforce to Rockhal’s business. “The venue is dependent on cross-border workers and the frontaliers are also an important target audience for us,” he says. And the number of commuters making their way across the border doesn’t look set to dwindle any time soon, as Luxembourg is the only place in Europe where people pay tax based on where they work, rather than where they live – and the local taxes are lower than in neighbouring countries.

TAXES AND CHARGES The local tax on tickets is 3%, while service charges vary. Rockhal charges a 10% fee up to a maximum of €5 per ticket, for instance.

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MEXICO Language: Spanish | Population (millions): 124.6 | Currency: Peso | GDP/Capita (US$): 19,900 | Internet Users (millions): 73.3 Smartphone penetration: 39.8% | Population % aged 15–24: 17.5 | Population % aged 25–54: 40.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 174 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 210

© 1073 studio

Katy Perry took her Witness tour on a five-date visit to Mexico in May 2018


espite a tense relationship with its disparaging northerly neighbour, Mexico is too large and too powerful ever to discount. It is the second-biggest economy in Latin America after Brazil, with no other close rivals, and with a population of 116 million, it shifts serious tickets, with some of the biggest promoters and busiest arenas in the world.

Mexico and continue to increase, though there are still plenty of ways to buy a paper ticket in person. Ticketmaster operates via online channels but also maintains more than 300 points of sale, as well as operating a variety of venue box offices and call centres in Mexico City, Monterrey and Guadalajara. Superboletos has a similar balance, selling chiefly through online channels but with box offices and outlets across the country.

PRIMARY TICKETING Just as Ocesa and Zignia Live line-up as Mexico’s top two promoters, so their respective Ticketmaster and Superboletos offshoots are the key ticketing players. Ocesa owner CIE has operated the local Ticketmaster platform as a joint venture since 1991, and Ticketmaster Mexico is comfortably the country’s biggest ticket-seller, claiming 33m sales a year, not only for Ocesa concerts but sport, theatre, exhibitions and other cultural events. Ocesa itself is particularly powerful, the third-biggest promoter in the world, chalking up $178m (€154m) in gross ticket sales in 2017 (source: Boxscore) and producing 16 festivals, including Vive Latino, the Electric Daisy Carnival and Corona Capital, not to mention the Mexican Grand Prix. Ocesa also operates the Epic Ticket app, in conjunction with AT&T – not, in fact, to sell tickets but to offer fans value-added experiences and additional benefits, such as front-row upgrades, parking, autographed items, travel, and artist meet-and-greets. Launched in 2007, Avalanz Group’s Zignia Live was already the world’s sixth biggest promoter in 2017, selling 2.3m tickets to Ocesa’s 4m, but registering similarly strong growth – the pair sold 3.7m and 1.9m, respectively, just the year before. Zignia Live operates Arena Ciudad de México and Arena Monterrey, the country’s two busiest arenas, and Superboletos sells more than 3m tickets annually. Other operators include eticket. Mexico’s Federal Competition Commission (Cofece) has, since May 2016, been fishing around in possible monopolistic practices in the live entertainment business, although since announcing its investigation it has made no further comment.

VALUE OF MARKET Live music revenues in Mexico were $225million (€195m) in 2016 (source: Pollstar).

SECONDARY TICKETING Anecdotally, it is suggested that as many as 40% of tickets for some shows make their way through secondary channels. StubHub is the most evident of the major resale sites in Mexico, where it operates as a secondary marketplace while also operating as a primary seller for events such as Monterrey’s Hellow Festival, to add to various sporting tie-ups.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Mexico has a wealth of national and regional music stars and scenes, and its blockbuster pop stars include Luis Miguel, Thalía, Paulina Rubio, Belinda, and king of ranchera music, Vicente Fernández.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Mexico’s enthusiasm for streaming services is well known, even though the country has long been a piracy and counterfeiting hotspot for music and many other goods. But last year it emerged that acts including Adele, Radiohead, Harry Styles and Metallica count Mexico City, with its population of 22m, as their top Spotify market. Even smaller indie artists have found unexpected success through the service and gone on to explore Mexico’s capital as a touring destination.

TAXES AND CHARGES DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Online and mobile sales take the lion’s share of the market in


VAT on tickets is 16%. Booking fees are a bit of a sore point in Mexico, where they often hit 20%.


THE NETHERLANDS Language: Dutch | Population (millions): 17.1 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 53,600 | Internet Users (millions): 15.4 Smartphone penetration: 73.6% | Population % aged 15–24: 12.1 | Population % aged 25–54: 39.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 523 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 587


here are few territories in the world with as high a festival concentration as the Netherlands. According to stats published by Festival Monitor, the comparatively small country (with 17 million inhabitants) put on 934 festivals in 2017. And even though Henk Schuit, managing director of Eventim Netherlands tells ITY that, “the festival market seems to have stalled a bit since 2017,” it has still been a formidable year overall for the Dutch live entertainment industry.

PRIMARY TICKETING According to insiders, Eventim has gained some ground on the market leader Ticketmaster, and has quite likely overtaken Ticketpoint and Paylogic, who ranked second and third, respectively, in ITY 2017. Since none of these companies disclose their sales figures by territory, a precise ranking is impossible. One of ITY’s sources onsite estimates that the total number of tickets for live entertainment sold in the Netherlands in 2017 was 40 million, and of those, Ticketmaster was responsible for around 5m. Other primary players include Ticketmatic, Active Tickets and Eventbrite, along with Tibbaa and blockchain-based ticketing platform GUTS. There are those working in the business that believe the market is becoming oversaturated, although Feld’s Steven Armstrong points out that it’s not as bad as in other EU countries. “Most events deal with exclusive ticket partners, which means that there are a few very strong players with solid market share,” he says. “But it seems that music/ festival events are generally open to trying new platforms (white-label solutions, FB ticketing platform, etc), so the market is active.”

Traditional, hard-copy tickets will continue to be popular, seeing as many concert and festivalgoers like to have something non-digital and/or collectible to remind them of an event.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES The Netherlands is very much a dance nation, hence EDM events always sell very well, alongside the traditional crowd pullers of rock and pop. The dominant genre changes depending on which company you ask, so whilst Paylogic claims that dance is the most popular genre, Buining reports that Ticketmaster sells more tickets for rock, pop and alternative rock events.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS According to Paylogic, “An increasing amount of events are taking place outside of the urban areas. We also see more niche, very high-demand events .”

TAXES AND CHARGES A 3% increase in the comparatively low VAT tariff for cultural products has recently been announced and will become effective January 2019, bringing the new fee to 9%. Concerts and festivals are considered cultural events in the Netherlands, which isn’t the case in all European countries, with a VAT exemption for culture. Service charges added to the face value of the ticket price vary depending on the ticketing partner, and are generally between 3% and 10%, but sometimes more.

SECONDARY TICKETING The country’s main resellers include TicketSwap, which caps the resale price at 20% above face value, Viagogo (which doesn’t), and Marktplaats. According to Schuit, secondary ticketing isn’t much of an issue in the Netherlands, but still describes it as “greatly annoying – for us, but especially for customers.” Feld’s Armstrong says, “It seems that the regulations to suppress resellers have been working over the past year. We still see some upset customers who end up buying their tickets from Viagogo and other resellers, but it looks like most of the public is now informed and careful to go to official sources.” The Dutch government announced a review of the secondary ticketing market earlier this year, an ongoing process that hasn’t yielded anything newsworthy at press time. “Occasionally, politicians flirt with regulation of the secondary market,” says Schuit, “but nothing has come out of it so far, and we don’t see this happening anytime soon.”

Almost all sales in the Netherlands are carried out online via desktop or mobile devices. The share of online sales was more than 90% for every ticketing professional that ITY spoke with. They all also confirmed that print-at-home was still very much the preferred option. According to Armstrong, “Mobile tickets have grown to over 30% as well, a trend that will certainly continue.” Aukina Buining, MD of Ticketmaster Netherlands, confirmed that the company has seen a real shift towards mobile tickets over the past year.

Kendrick Lamar’s appearance at Lowlands Festival 2018 helped promoters Mojo Concerts and Ticketmaster enjoy yet another successful year


© Bart Heemskerk



NEW ZEALAND Languages: English, Maori | Population (millions): 4.5 | Currency: Dollar | GDP/Capita (US$): 38,900 | Internet Users (millions): 4.0 Smartphone penetration: 70% | Population % aged 15–24: 13.4 | Population % aged 25–54: 39.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 110 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 133


ew Zealand has much in common with its neighbour, Australia, and a shared language is only part of it. The music community in NZ is also enjoying a rush of international success, none greater than Lorde, whose sophomore album Melodrama hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 last year and was shortlisted for the Album of the Year Grammy. Its live industry is also maturing, thanks in part to the rise of streaming music services, investment in infrastructure, and good old-fashioned entrepreneurial spirit.

Ticketek sold tickets for The Killers when they visited Horncastle Arena in Christchurch in April 2018

PRIMARY TICKETING The two titans of the Australian ticketing business, Ticketmaster and Ticketek, are also the big players in New Zealand. Many major tours to Australia typically begin or end in NZ. Auckland’s 12,000-capacity Spark Arena (formerly Vector Arena) is a regular destination on major touring itineraries down under, and the Mt Smart Stadium gives promoters options for staging big shows in NZ’s most populous city. The capital Wellington and south island markets Christchurch and Dunedin also host international dates. Dunedin’s Forsyth Barr Stadium is on a roll, with eight international concert bookings this year, including Roger Waters, Robbie Williams, Ed Sheeran (three shows), Kendrick Lamar, Pink, and Shania Twain. “2018 will be our biggest year yet since opening in 2011,” says Kim Barnes, marketing and communications manager at Dunedin Venues, which operates the stadium, whose features include a clear, permanent roof.

VALUE OF MARKET 2015 was an “extraordinary” one for NZ’s live performance space, though 2016 “could not sustain the forward momentum,” according to a comprehensive report on NZ’s music industry published in May 2018. The national music industry earned an estimated NZ$90.7million (€52.9m) in live performance revenues, based on public performance royalties collected by APRA AMCOS, well down on the NZ$150m-plus (€87.5m) reported in 2015. The “significant decline” was “likely influenced by scheduling of tours between the two years,” notes the report – Economic Contribution of the New Zealand Music Industry – commissioned by Recorded Music New Zealand and compiled by PwC. Homegrown artists were found to have generated NZ$25.4m (€14.8m) during the most recent period. The nature of touring is cyclic, and Frontier Touring chief Michael Gudinski is keen to grow his company’s business in NZ. “I’m looking at expanding,” he tells ITY. “We’re pretty strong in New Zealand, we’ve got four or five people there and we set-up more than 25 years ago, but we’re definitely looking at expanding.”

SECONDARY TICKETING The rogue secondary market is a big issue on both sides of the Tasman. But in the absence of legislative muscle, Maria O’Connor, Ticketmaster’s managing director for Australia and NZ, is confident the industry will solve the problem. Pointing to the rollout of Ticketmaster Verified Fan and other initiatives, O’Connor says, “We’re changing the mechanisms of an on-sale so that the speed of bots is no longer a factor in the rush to get tickets.”

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Most concertgoers buy tickets via their desktops, though purchases via mobile devices are becoming increasingly popular.


Independent ticketing firms say online platforms account for some 90% of sales, a figure that would be split 50/50 online against mobile. “We’re just about to move out of a relatively stale period of evolution into a more exciting period of revolution as emerging technologies become more available, scalable, and affordable,” says Harley Evans, the New Zealand-born, Australia-based MD and owner of Moshtix and The Ticket Group.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS Like Australia, venues in New Zealand are typically tied to an exclusive ticketing supplier. Ticketek works with a raft of venues including Horncastle Arena and AMI Stadium while Ticketmaster handles ticketing for Mt Smart Stadium, Forsyth Barr Stadium, and Spark Arena. Scottishborn, NZ-based, live music veteran Stuart Clumpas is confident that NZ is well placed for growth. “There are also many Kiwis who’ve trundled around the world. They’re coming back with experience,” notes Clumpas, who was tapped to steer Live Nation’s activities in the market as chairman. “NZ is people-based, and we have great people here.”


NORWAY Languages: Norwegian, Sami | Population (millions): 5.3 | Currency: Krone | GDP/Capita (US$): 71,800 | Internet Users (millions): 5.1 Smartphone penetration: 79.3% | Population % aged 15–24: 12.6 | Population % aged 25–54: 41.0 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 296 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 315

© Jonathan Vivaas Kise

Ticketmaster helped promoter Atomic Soul achieve Norway’s biggest ever show when Eminem headlined their Sommertid festival in June 2018


orway is the most prosperous nation in Scandinavia and one of the wealthiest in the world, thanks to its oil business. The resulting $1trillion (€859billion) sovereign wealth fund tends to keep the wolf from the door, as do the country’s controversial wolf hunts. The music industry in Norway is, however, the smallest among the three Scandinavian nations by turnover, perhaps because, at around 5.1million inhabitants, it is the least populous.

PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketmaster’s Billettservice rules the roost in Norway, just as it has done since it launched in 1977. Venuepoint, formerly a joint venture between CTS Eventim and Egmont, now belongs to Eventim alone, and is pushing hard across Scandinavia with Eventim.no as its Norwegian brand, and the old Billetportalen name now retired. Bergen-based TicketCo, meanwhile, has processed more than NOK757million (€77m) in transactions for some of Norway’s leading music, entertainment and sports events since its launch five years ago.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Plenty of tickets are still sold through box offices in Norway – as much as a third in recent times – though online and mobile take easily the largest share these days. Ticketmaster reports that overall, most of its tickets now are mobile tickets. “In Norway, a lot of tickets are still sold through box offices, with the rest sold online,” says Kristian Seljeset, managing director of Ticketmaster Norway and Sweden. “Often, online retail is linked to our various social media channels. For the tickets Ticketmaster Norway handles, the majority are mobile tickets, the rest are paper tickets.” Eventim is predominantly digital, too, though in slightly different proportions. “The majority will choose print-at-home tickets, but we see as many as 30% being willing to pay a premium for a mobile wallet ticket,” says Venuepoint CEO Jens B. Arnesen. TicketCo’s model, which recently rolled into the UK, starting with lower-league football teams, aims for an ease of purchase comparable to Uber or Deliveroo, and involves an app that generates a QR code that works as the ticket. The app also allows organisers to advertise special deals on F&B, merchandise and transport.

VALUE OF MARKET The most recent audit of the Norwegian music industry, by the Norwegian Arts Council (Kulturrådet) in 2016, put the value of the live business at NOK1.93bn (€199m).

SECONDARY TICKETING Selling tickets above face value is illegal in Norway, which isn’t to say it doesn’t happen. “Sites like Viagogo approach Norwegians with tickets from outside of Norway through online channels,” says Venuepoint Norway managing director Marcia Louise Titley. “It is a growing problem, particularly in the past 12 months.” It remains a fact, though, that ticket prices in Norway are already relatively high, leaving relatively little headroom for profiteering.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Norway is a modern, pop nation, strong in pop, dance, metal, urban, and singer-songwriters, with Röyksopp, Klangstof, Kygo, Lindstrøm, Sigrid, Aurora, Alan Walker, Anna of the North, and Smerz all attracting international attention at varying levels. Oslo is easily the key live city for international traffic. Metallica, Kendrick Lamar, Sam Smith, Roger Waters, and Queen + Adam Lambert have all played the Telenor Arena in 2018, and festivals in the capital include Øyafestivalen, Live Nation’s Findings, Norwegian Wood, OverOslo and Picnic in the Park. Bergen also punches well above its weight with the superstarheavy Bergenfest.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS It’s not just about pop music. “There has been a high demand for musicals in Norway,” says Arnesen. “Shows like Phantom of the Opera and Les Misérables are performing sold-out shows for months on end.”

TAXES AND CHARGES Music, classical and comedy tickets are all exempt from Norway’s 25% VAT, though tickets for sporting events are subject to a tax of 10%.



POLAND Language: Polish | Population (millions): 38.5 | Currency: Złoty | GDP/Capita (US$): 29,500 | Internet Users (millions): 28.2 Smartphone penetration: 54% | Population % aged 15–24: 10.7 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 144 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 145

© Radoslaw Kazmierczak

Bruno Mars was one of the A-list acts to play Alter Art’s Open’er Festival 2018, where the company uses its own AlterSklep ticketing platform


oland is the most developed live entertainment market in Central and Eastern Europe, and ceased to be an emerging market years ago, having become a fixed stop on any decent-sized tour. The country’s major festivals, Open’er and Orange Warsaw, both promoted by AlterArt, boast top line-ups, and the population of capital city Warsaw has money to spend. The Stones stopped off at the capital during the European leg of their No Filter Tour in July, after tickets that went on sale for between €89 to €444, sold out in no time.

PRIMARY TICKETING The county’s biggest ticketing operator is still eBilet, whose desktop and mobile websites, according to independent statistics published by Similarweb.com, received double the number of visitors as Eventim in June 2018. Since last year, the company has been expanding to sell tickets outside its home market, in the UK, Ireland and Czech Republic. “We have started offering our white-label ticketing system globally in the SaaS model,” reports eBilet head Marcin Matuszewski, who estimates that the Polish ticketing industry (including theatre and sporting events) is worth more than PLN700million (€162m). “The market grows around 15% annually,” he says. The country’s second biggest player, Eventim, is experiencing “stable development and good sales,” according to Joanna Bączkowska, managing director of Eventim Poland, who reports that the company has expanded its online sales channels, including its website and mobile app. In joint third place are Ticketmaster Poland and Ticketportal.

SECONDARY TICKETING The more potential for sold-out shows a market presents, the more developed its secondary ticketing industry is going to be. The number of transactions on the secondary market has definitely increased compared to last year, although resellers are still operating on the fringes, since reselling tickets above face value is outlawed in Poland. “In general, the size of the secondary market is not big. We do not feel its importance,” Matuszewski tells ITY.


DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Local artists perform very well in Poland, as is evidenced by successful tours from the likes of Męskie Granie, Dawid Podsiadło, Kortez, and Hey. Eventim sells around 70% of all its tickets for shows by local artists, according to Bączkowska, who adds that: “more and more local artists play in large venues.” EBilet also sells most of its inventory for local acts, citing Dawid Podsiadło and Taco Hemingway as two of the most promising newcomers. However, whilst local acts may lead the way in terms of the number of tickets sold, “if you take into consideration turnover, foreign acts win the race,” reports Matuszewski, adding that “the nation is slowly becoming more wealthy and is able to pay higher ticket prices.” Bączkowska says that the hunger for international talent is growing each year, and more and more acts include Poland in their tour routing. “Poland can be proud of a very good infrastructure, including five stadiums, eight arenas and plenty of smaller local venues/halls, and there is still room for new events,” she says. Most tickets (around 85-90% in the case of eBilet; and 80% plus of Eventim’s stock), are sold online. According to Bączkowska, “most of the sales come directly from desktop devices and from customers that use web shops. Mobile sales are developing and show high dynamic growth rates. POS sales are declining as less and less people go to physical stores. Box office sales are still common for certain types of event, like e-gaming, e-sport and fairs.” Katarzyna Suska, head of Ticketmaster Poland, adds that, “the most popular ticket type is the print-at-home ticket; customers consider it the easiest method of delivery. However, we are now starting to see increased interest in our app and mobile tickets – which is where we see the future. There is still a demand for keepsakes, which is where Ticketmaster’s customised Collector Ticket comes in. This product continues to grow in popularity.”

TAXES AND CHARGES VAT on tickets in Poland is 8%. Additional charges include payment fees (of around 2%), and delivery fees, which for domestic purchases range from PLN8-20 (€1.90-4.63).


PORTUGAL Language: Portuguese | Population (millions): 10.8 | Currency: Euro GDP/Capita (US$): 30,400 | Internet Users (millions): 7.6 Smartphone penetration: 58.4% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.4 Population % aged 25–54: 41.7 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 91 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 89


ortugal is a festival country. According to Jorge Vinha da Silva, MD of one of the country’s main ticketing companies, Blueticket, “Summer festivals are a huge deal, and each year new events are born.” Besides Blueticket, TicketLine and Bilheteira Online (BOL) also operate in the market, serving as each other’s main competition. Which company comes out ahead in the ranking depends on the genre of tickets one is looking at. While Blueticket seems to do very well with tourism content, monuments and museums, as well as sports, 41% of TicketLine’s inventory is made up of live concerts. There are no official numbers available, but Blueticket claims to be the only company with public account reports. “According to our market studies, the total ticketing market is worth about €200million, including live entertainment, exhibitions and cinema,” Da Silva reports.

Once the in-house platform for Lisbon’s Altice Arena, Blueticket has become a major player in the Portuguese live entertainment market

secondary market is Spanish company Ticketbis.net. However, “The promoters in Portugal don’t accept tickets bought from these companies. They inform the public of the official sales points,” says TicketLine’s Rita Amado.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Blueticket sells 45% of all its tickets online, whilst TicketLine reports a figure of 49%. The remainder is sold by venues’ box offices and retail outlets such as Fnac, Worten, El Corte Inglés, Phone House, and many more. “Purchasing in outlets is still a trend, although online ticketing is growing fast,” Da Silva tells ITY. The ratio of paper tickets versus print-at-home/mobile tickets is bordering on 50/50 in Blueticket’s case, with the latter coming out just slightly ahead (52%). For TicketLine, the ratio is around 40/60.

TAXES AND CHARGES SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary ticketing is illegal in Portugal, which, of course, didn’t stop Viagogo from setting up shop. Another player active in the

The VAT on tickets in Portugal ranges from 13% for concerts and festivals, to 23% for sports and conferences. Depending on the company in question, a service charge of between 3-6% is added.

ROMANIA Language: Romanian | Population (millions): 21.5 | Currency: Leu GDP/Capita (US$): 24,500 | Internet Users (millions): 12.8 Smartphone penetration: 47.6% | Population % aged 15–24: 10.6 Population % aged 25–54: 46.0

Blaj Live, and Awake Festival. Yet, Romania is still yet to become a must-visit stop on the tour schedules of international acts. “Over the last months, there were not that may international shows on sale, the majority were Romanian,” Hartmann tells ITY.



omania has been experiencing political turmoil for years now, which is why the country’s live entertainment professionals have taken matters into their own hands. Starting with the formation of promoters association AROC; then the launch of the East European Music Conference, which was developed for the purposes of sharing best practices with the wider industry; and, most recently, the foundation of Romanian Music Export, whose remit is to promote local talent to the rest of Europe and beyond.

PRIMARY TICKETING Like with so many places in Europe, CTS Eventim controls most of the market. Other sellers enjoying a share of the Romanian ticketing pie include, bilet.ro, which claims to sell 1 million tickets per annum; bilete.ro; Myticket.ro (not DEAG affiliated); and white-label/DIY service Livetickets.ro. Eventim Romania MD Georg Hartmann says that the country’s live music business is doing better than in previous years. “We have great local acts like Andra, who sells very well, and international-level productions,” he says. The country’s festival market seems in good shape, too, as evidenced by the success of major events Untold Festival and Electric Castle, but also by smaller-capacity events such as ARTmania Festival,

Since sold-out shows still remain a rarity, secondary market activity in Romania is virtually negligible, like in previous years.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS “Romania is a late-buyers’ market,” Hartmann explains, adding that, “Often, you can sell a third of the total sales in the last week before a show. This happens online but also through the outlets and our own box offices.” Despite salaries in Romania being much lower than in Western Europe, “ticket prices for international productions are nearly the same, so it takes much more money – and effort – for fans to buy tickets,” says Hartmann, “Everything that is not mainstream seems to be more difficult to sell,” he adds.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES The younger generation is increasingly opting for print-at-home and mobile tickets, although the classic printed ticket that can be retained as a keepsake, remains the most popular form.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES The most popular genres are old-school rock, dance, electro, classical, and world music. “Independent music is not that strong in Romania,” reports Hartmann.



RUSSIA Languages: Russian, Tatar | Population (millions): 142.3 | Currency: Ruble | GDP/Capita (US$): 27,800 | Internet Users (millions): 108.8 Smartphone penetration: 57.5% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.5 | Population % aged 25–54: 44.7 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 463 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 515


ussia’s relationship with the West has grown only more problematic since its annexation of the Crimea in 2014, with alleged roles in both the 2016 US election and the British EU referendum, as well as an apparent hand in a number of extrajudicial killings at home and abroad. As a result, there’s barely a dribble of Western acts into the key markets of St Petersburg and Moscow these days, but the Russian ticketing business is doing interesting things nonetheless.

PRIMARY TICKETING There is plenty of consolidation in the Russian ticketing market, with particular interest from Telcos, FinTech and media companies. In February 2018, MTS, Russia’s largest mobile phone operator, acquired leading ticketers Ticketland and Ponominalu – the former in full, the latter a 78.2% share – in deals worth more than RUB3.6billion (€44million). The deal marked a major push into the market from MTS, creating the second-largest Russian ticketing operation, and gave an indication of the growing importance of mobile. Kassir.ru, owned by promoter Evgeny Finkelstein’s PMI Corporation, is reckoned to be number one in the market, selling more than 4.3m tickets in 2017, and generating revenues of RUB7.1bn (€87.4m). In July 2018, Kassir sold a stake of unspecified size to Russian digital bank Tinkoff, and now has the ability to sell tickets directly via the Tinkoff online bank and mobile app. Kassir has also partnered with the OneTwoTrip ticketing platform, allowing users to book hotels, air and train travel. Other operators include Muzbilet, Tickets Cloud, Concert, RedKassa and Yandex Tickets, though overt international involvement in the Russian ticketing market is limited to Eventim’s Parter operation. Most ticket operators work on a commission basis, buying tickets from organisers at below face value and selling them at full price. Less often, they will take a service fee on top of the face-value price. Increasing numbers of event organisers take a hand in selling their own inventory, though most use a third-party contractor who will allow them to offer tickets through a variety of channels, including websites, apps and social networks. Some ticketing operators also connect to each other’s databases. More than half of Russia’s concert tickets (52%) are now sold by organisers, a figure that rises to 64% for sporting events and falls to 37% for festivals (source: PwC/Moscow Ticketing Forum Russian Ticketing Industry Survey 2018). Software companies may provide back end services to promoters and venues in exchange for a commission on sales, or, in rarer cases, build a platform at a fixed cost.

Kazan Arena is just one of a number of venues used for the FIFA World Cup that will help boost Russia’s ability to host stadium tours

phone numbers and feature dynamic QR codes, which makes them impossible to copy or counterfeit,” she says. “Legitimate ticket buyers can transfer or sell them only via the Tickets Wallet app on their smartphones, and that means event organisers are now always in touch with their ticket buyers.”

VALUE OF MARKET Estimates of the size of the ticketing market in Russia range from RUB45bn (€553m) to RUB60bn (€738m) a year.

SECONDARY TICKETING Worries over the increasing size of the secondary ticketing market in Russia have driven the development of blockchain options, with secondary’s share of the overall market estimated at around 21% by industry respondents (source: PwC/Moscow Ticketing Forum). In the same report, 67% said that they expected the primary and secondary markets to unify in the next five years.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES International tourers are largely giving Russia the swerve just now, though there remains plenty of domestic entertainment. Cyber sports are huge, Russia has plenty of music superstars of its own, including Zemfira, Philipp Kirkorov and Dima Bilan, and tours of popular bloggers and stand-up comedians sell well, as does theatre.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Online ticket sales came late to Russia but have grown fast, even in less cosmopolitan areas where credit cards have been slow to gain traction. Some platforms now sell as many as 85% of their tickets online, mostly via the web, with apps generally experiencing a slower take-up. Russia is also a breeding ground for pioneering blockchain technology. Russian ticketing platform Tickets Cloud offered Ethereum-based ‘smart tickets’ for a February 2018 Kraftwerk show at the State Kremlin Palace. Tickets Cloud founder Katerina Kirillova, who also runs the Moscow Ticketing Forum conference, believes such crypto-tickets are the antidote to illicit resale. “Smart tickets are linked to ticket buyers’ cell


CULTURAL ANALYSIS Dynamic pricing is common in Russia, with prices fluctuating based on demand. Tickets tend to sell gradually and evenly, in contrast to the hectic on-sale periods of the Western world, though local fan-base artists are still capable of creating heavy traffic as soon as they go on-sale.

TAXES AND CHARGES Service charges typically vary between 5% and 10%. The Russian Government approved a VAT rise from 18% to 20% from 1 January 2019, though it was awaiting parliamentary ratification at press time.


SINGAPORE Languages: Mandarin, English, Malay | Population (millions): 5.9 | Currency: Dollar | GDP/Capita (US$): 93,900 | Internet Users (millions): 4.7 Smartphone penetration: 74.9% | Population % aged 15–24: 16.6 | Population % aged 25–54: 50.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 43 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 51


ingapore is the fourth most expensive city in the world for expats, behind only Hong Kong, Tokyo and Zürich. But with 5.8million people and a low unemployment rate, there is plenty of live entertainment to be had (though audiences are reportedly becoming pickier), as well as a pretty clear ticketing hierarchy.

PRIMARY TICKETING Veteran incumbent Sistic remains the largest operator, with around 70% of the market, as well as offering its STiX technology across the region. Its main rival is APACTix, which also set-up the Singapore Sports Hub’s in-house Sports Hub Tix to serve the Singapore Indoor Stadium, National Stadium, OCBC Aquatic Centre and OCBC Arena. Sistic CEO Kenneth Tan expects future competition to come increasingly from outside the established industry. “Buying tickets may no longer be restricted just to ticketing companies, as other e-commerce players, including those providing transport, shopping and banking, are looking for lifestyle products to value add and enhance their customer experience,” he says.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES In spite of very high mobile usage, Singaporeans are still three times more likely to make purchases on their computers than their phones [source: ValueWalk] – though, as Tan points out, the lines between devices are blurring as desktops become more tablet-like and phones and tablets get bigger. Ticketers also maintain physical box offices and phonelines.

VALUE OF MARKET There were 3,430 ticketed music, theatre and dance events in 2016, according to Singapore’s Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth – an increase on 3,323 in 2015. The market has appeared to dip a little in value, however, around 1.4m tickets were sold for music, dance and theatre events in 2016, down from 1.56m the year before, with gross takings (not including those of Singapore Sports Hub) standing at S$89.4m (€56.3m), from S$121.8m (€76.7m) in 2015. It may be significant that the economy faltered and the government’s funding of arts and heritage was cut from S$936.7m (€589.8m) to S$712.7m (€448.7m) between those two years.

SECONDARY TICKETING Scalping is illegal in Singapore and tickets found on the black market can be voided, though the problem is still growing in severity, and is obviously mainly evident when tickets are in high demand. Controversy recently surrounded four concerts by local star JJ Lin at the Singapore Indoor Stadium, for which tickets sold out fast and were rapidly put on-sale through secondary marketplaces such as StubHub and Carousell at prices of S$5,000-6,000 (€3,148-3,777), compared to a top official price point of S$348 (€219).

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Singapore is a major entertainment hub for Southeast Asia, and its pop offering this year draws from all over the world, including JJ Lin, K-pop stars Wanna One, Taiwanese favourite Teresa Teng on a posthumous holographic comeback tour, Boyzone, Sam Smith, Mariah Carey, Bob Dylan, Celine Dion and Dua Lipa. “Interest in pop concerts is still very much artist-driven,” says Tan, “but the Korean wave that created a storm a few years ago has somewhat subsided.”

CULTURAL ANALYSIS The 55,000-cap National Stadium, the neighbour of the 12,000-cap Singapore Indoor Stadium within the Sports Hub, hosted Foo Fighters, Backstreet Boys and Coldplay in 2017, and Taiwanese superstars Jay Chou and Mayday this year. Coldplay managed two nights and scored the venue’s highest ever attendance with 52,000 tickets sold. Other key local venues include the 5,000-cap Star Theatre and the 2,333-cap Zepp@BIGBOX.

© Dan Walsh

TAXES AND CHARGES Midas Promotions and Sports Hub Tix enjoyed great success with Sam Smith in early October at SIngapore Indoor Stadium

Ticketers collect a booking fee of S$1-4 (€0.60-2.50), depending on the price of the ticket, plus delivery charges where applicable. Concert promoters are subsidised by the Singaporean government because of music’s value to tourism, in the form of cash sponsorships, free or discounted venue rental, or tax breaks to offset ticket prices.




© Martin Šopinec

Language: Slovak | Population (millions): 5.4 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 33,000 | Internet Users (millions): 4.4 Smartphone penetration: 57% | Population % aged 15–24: 10.9 | Population % aged 25–54: 45.1

Chemical Brothers were one of the headliners at Pohoda Festival 2018


he popularity of live entertainment – and music in particular – has made Slovakia the victim of its own success, as it is one of the few countries in Central and Eastern Europe where Viagogo has started to provide its controversial resale “services”. The local population’s desire for live music is evident in the many events organised against the country’s government by Slovak promoters and musicians, mainly after the murder of journalist Jan Kuciak, as well as concerts and festivals to raise funds and awareness for specific issues.

PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketpro, based in the neighbouring Czech Republic, was once a significant player in Slovakia, but that company’s presence is now negligible as home-grown operation Ticketportal has become the no. 1 ticketer in Slovakia. Whether new Ticketpro owner, Ticketmaster, has any plans to expand into Slovakia remains unclear but certainly European market leader Eventim has been exploring opportunities in the region for a couple of years, although with limited success, so far. Headed by Eduard Janosik, Ticketportal has 1,800 points of sale in Slovakia, including in state-owned post offices. The company also provides ticketing services in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland, and is actively expanding into Austria, Belarus and Romania. (It is not the same Ticketportal that operates in Switzerland.) The Ticketportal.sk platform is one of Slovakia’s most popular discovery sites for live music, cultural and sporting events. The company’s sales systems are installed in theatres, sports halls, cinemas and museums throughout the country. It also operates a platform called GoTicket that local promoters can use to facilitate print-at-home ticket sales to customers. Other players include Hungarian operator Interticket, TicketStream and Predpredaj.sk, a ticketing company founded by Slovak Internet search engine Zoznam, which is owned by T-Mobile. In addition to using Zoznam’s power as a media partner to run successful sales campaigns, Predpredaj also sells tickets in T-Mobile stores. The close proximity to Austria and the Czech Republic allows fans to easily cross the borders for concerts and shows, meaning that bigger players such as Eventim do have a market in Slovakia, albeit for events that mostly take place outside of the country.


Pohoda Festival promoter Michal Kaščák has an exclusive deal with Ticketportal but his festival predominantly sells tickets through its in-house ticketing operation.

SECONDARY TICKETING Online retail and auction sites, such as Bazos.sk and Bazar.sk, sometimes offer ticket resales but there are no local secondary operations in Slovakia. However, sell-out festivals and concerts are making secondary ticketing a more viable business in the country, and Kaščák tells ITY that his festival team experienced issues related to Viagogo for the first time in 2018. “There is no doubt that Viagogo’s activities here are getting bigger,” he says. “At Pohoda this year, we had some problems at the festival gates when people turned up with tickets bought through Viagogo.”

VALUE OF MARKET It is estimated that the value of the ticketing business in Slovakia is about €40million per annum. Promoters are required to file detailed reports to the country’s Ministry of Culture, which states that nearly 2 million attended concerts and festivals in 2017, with more than 1 million of those paying for tickets, while the remainder were for free shows. The government numbers do not account for other ticketed events, such as sports or family entertainment.

TAXES AND CHARGES Booking fees in Slovakia are typically between 6-10% but Eventim has reportedly been targeting promoters with deals of 4% commission to try to break into the market.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS The emergence of secondary ticketing in Slovakia highlights the evolving nature of the local market. Historically, people have bought tickets at the last minute, but with better acts and more professional events now becoming the norm, buying tickets in advance for festivals and big-name acts is becoming more common. Young people are becoming used to purchasing tickets online for events but physical stores, post offices and ticketing kiosks are still paramount for live music promoters.


REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA Languages: Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans, English, Sotho | Population (millions): 54.8 | Currency: Rand | GDP/Capita (US$): 13,500 | Internet Users (millions): 29.3 | Smartphone penetration: 28.6% | Population % aged 15–24: 17.6 | Population % aged 25–54: 41.8 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 83 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 112

Big Concerts promoted The Script in Cape Town and Pretoria in May 2018


outh Africa is Africa’s biggest live music market and by far the most visited by Western acts. Live Nation – though not Ticketmaster – is present since its acquisition of long-term partner Big Concerts, and there is a busy ticketing sector, although modernisers have traditionally come up against a number of issues, from alleged monopoly practices to antiquated banking options.

PRIMARY TICKETING Computicket, the ticketing division of supermarket giant Shoprite Holdings, has maintained its position as the leading primary operator in South Africa for many years, having launched in 1971 as the world’s first computerised ticketing system. It is admirably diversified, selling theatre, concert, festival, sport and cinema tickets, as well as bus tickets, gift vouchers and classified adverts, but its methods have been under scrutiny for a decade amid complaints that it bullied vendors into exclusive long-term contracts and squeezed out rivals in the process. An investigation by the Competition Commission was said to be coming to a head last year, having begun in 2010, though at the time of writing there had been no ruling. With a strong mass-market position and a powerful network of online and physical outlets, Computicket still holds pole position in a market that also includes the sports-focused TicketPro, iTickets and Webtickets, as well as event technology start-ups such as NuTickets, Plankton and Quicket. The market leader’s deep relationships with retailers and large promoters such as Big Concerts have kept rivals at bay, but the new breed of start-ups are notably strong in festivals and small events. Quicket founder James Tagg says start-ups such as his have been able to draw many smaller operators onto the web by allowing them to go online, list their own events, and manage their own ticketing. “When we first started [in 2011], a lot of events were just running on cash and spreadsheets,” he says.

including a substantial contingent of cash buyers and a rather gradual transition to cutting-edge online models. “I remember when we launched, it was literally out of absolute frustration with Computicket,” says Tagg. “In those days, you were only able to book online for major events, and now you can book online for everything. In our first year, we had 30% mobile users, and now it’s over 70%.” The paradox of South Africa’s impressive smartphone penetration, however, is that there is still no successful mobile payment solution, in a market where cash remains king and anything else struggles to build trust. Vodafone’s money transfer app M-Pesa, for instance, was shut down in 2016 after targeting 10m users in three years and registering just 76,000 after six. Even Uber accepts cash, and 85% of e-commerce transactions are effected through credit cards, with bank transfers and cash-on-delivery still common. Younger gig-goers, of course, are the most likely to buy through mobile, but it will be a long time before retail points, paper tickets and cash sales pass into history.

VALUE OF MARKET Live music revenue in South Africa was ZAR1.2billion (€74million) in 2016, according to PwC, accounting for the larger part of the ZAR2.2bn (€134m) music market.

SECONDARY TICKETING Viagogo operates in South Africa and, at the time of writing, purported to offer tickets to the country’s hottest shows in years: Ed Sheeran’s sold-out March 2019 dates at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg (two nights) and the Cape Town Stadium. However, Big Concerts warns that only tickets bought through Computicket will be valid, and all the usual careful Sheeran anti-touting measures are in force. Elsewhere, demand for tickets in South Africa isn’t generally strong enough to galvanise the secondary market.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES The South African rand has strengthened slightly since the dark days of 2016, but international talent remains expensive. Certain big tourers – Katy Perry, Sheeran, Guns N’ Roses, Chris Tucker – are still making it down to the tip of the continent this year and next. But otherwise, South Africa is entertaining itself, with healthy Afrikaans, hip-hop and dance music scenes, as well as splinter movements such as Durban-rooted house sub-genre Gqom, which rose to international fame last year.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS South Africa has numerous smallish, but very vigorous, homegrown festivals, including Rocking The Daisies on the Cloof Wine Estate north of Cape Town; Oppikoppi in Northam, Limpopo; Up The Creek near Swellendam in the Western Cape; and Afrikaburn in the Northern Cape’s Tankwa Karoo National Park. Ultra Festival is a relatively rare import, having staged five editions since 2014, on consecutive days in Johannesburg and Cape Town.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Smartphones are ubiquitous in South Africa, and recent years have seen considerable modernisation in the ticketing business, although the market has certain old-fashioned characteristics,

TAXES AND CHARGES As of March 2018, 15% VAT is applied to ticket sales, and fees can vary from 6% to as much as 15%, depending on the provider.




© Wilma Lorenzo

Language: Spanish | Population (millions): 48.9 | Currency: Euro | GDP/Capita (US$): 38,300 | Internet Users (millions): 39.1 Smartphone penetration: 65.6% | Population % aged 15–24: 9.6 | Population % aged 25–54: 44.9 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 336 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 377

Promoter Mercury Wheels used Ticketmaster to sell out Sam Smith’s show when he played Madrid’s WiZink Center in October 2018


hile the last 12 months have been difficult politically for Spain, with the ongoing issue of Catalan independence burning away at the core of government, the Spanish economy has performed well. In 2017, it grew 3.1%, outstripping the Eurozone figure of 2.5%, leading the New York Times to proclaim that Spain’s “long economic nightmare” was finally over. The country’s live music industry performed well too, recording its fourth consecutive year of growth (and third year of double-digit growth) with a 20.6% increase, a phenomenon that local live promoter association APM (La Asociación de Promotores Musicales) said was largely thanks to the reduction in VAT on “cultural goods,” from 21% to a much more reasonable 10%, which came into effect last year. With Brussels now predicting that the Spanish economy is set to grow 2.6% in 2018 and 2.1% in 2019, plus a new government led by the Spanish Socialist Workers’ Party (PSOE), the outlook seems generally positive for Spain and the Spanish live music business, although margins remain tight for small- and medium-sized promoters.

U2’s decision to allow open ticketing for their 2018 Madrid gig – after opting for named tickets for their 2017 Barcelona date – proving a disappointment for some in the live industry. In 2017, the question of secondary ticketing was raised in Spanish Congress by Félix Álvaraz, a minister from the Ciudadanos party, but so far there has been no concrete action to regulate the industry. The leading secondary ticketing companies in Spain, now that Ticketmaster’s Seatwave has disappeared, are TengoEntradas and Viagogo. Ticketbis, a local start-up, was bought by eBay in May 2015 and officially changed its name to StubHub in February 2017. It has recently started to make moves into primary ticketing, signing agreements with Sónar festival and promoters Last Tour.

TAXES AND CHARGES Although the Spanish live music industry has been celebrating the reduction in VAT to 10%, the 10% levy that local collecting society SGAE takes remains a source of controversy. APM has led the move to lower this rate, which it calls “excessive” compared to other countries.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES In 2015, APM reported that 51.4% of all live music tickets in Spain were bought from the venue box office, while 35.9% were bought online, a relatively low percentage that reflected Spaniards’ lingering reluctance to shop online (Amazon Spain only launched in 2011). Since then, things have been slowly changing, with online sales on the up. One Barcelona promoter said that his company’s ticket sales were now 92% online, 7% from the venue box office, and 1% from a physical retailer in advance. With this has come a growth in mobile ticketing. One local source said that 58% of tickets sold were print-at-home, versus 35% mobile, and 7% paper ticket.

PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketmaster is the largest primary ticket company in Spain, followed by Ticketea, which Eventbrite acquired in April 2018, and Entradas.com (bought by Eventim in 2014). Local promoters say this is typical of the acquisition-led centralisation in Spain’s ticketing market. In May 2018, Entradas.com’s parent company Eventim acquired 63.5% of leading Spanish promoter Doctor Music, which promotes concerts from the likes of Katy Perry, Bruno Mars and Shawn Mendes. Digital tools such as Onebox and Wegow that allow promoters to sell their own tickets online are also growing in popularity among Spanish promoters.

VALUE OF MARKET The Spanish live music market grew 20.6% in 2017 to €269.2million, its fourth successive year of growth following increases of 14.7% in 2017, 12.1% in 2015, and 9.8% in 2014. APM said the increase was thanks to the reduction of VAT on cultural goods, as well as Spain’s consolidation as a market for large international tours. Ricky Martin gave 13 concerts in Spain in 2017, selling 115,805 tickets, followed by Guns N’ Roses (91,200), Colombian reggaeton singer Maluma (70,914), and the Rolling Stones, who played one sold-out date in Barcelona, shifting 56,338 tickets.

SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary ticketing continues to be controversial in Spain, with


INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES International artists may dominate the touring headlines in Spain but local acts can still shift a significant number of tickets. Spanish singer-songwriter Melendi sold more tickets than anyone else in Spain last year, with 208,972 people attending his 37 concerts, followed by Andalusian singer Joaquín Sabina (172,755 people over 24 concerts), Almería’s David Bisbal (137,760 people over 28 concerts), and Malaga’s Vanesa Martín (122,136 people over 48 concerts). Pop and rock continue to dominate ticket sales, although there is notable support for Latin American music. Maluma, Morat and Luis Fonsi were all among the top ten international tours in Spain last year. Rap and R&B continue to grow in popularity among young Spanish audiences, although these artists are yet to make a significant impact on ticket sales.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS The Barcelona area dominates Spain’s live music market, reporting sales of €60.4m in 2017, ahead of Madrid (€48.7m), and Seville (€10.2m). However, Barcelona’s two best-known festivals, Primavera Sound and Sónar, are not the biggest festivals in Spain. That honour goes to Arenal Sound in Castellón, which focuses on big pop and dance acts (2018 headliners include Steve Aoki and James Blunt), followed by reggae festival Rototom Sunsplash in Benicàssim. Primavera Sound came in third, with Festival Internacional de Benicàssim (FIB) in fifth, and Sónar in tenth position.


SWEDEN Language: Swedish | Population (millions): 9.9 | Currency: Krona | GDP/Capita (US$): 51,500 | Internet Users (millions): 9.0 Smartphone penetration: 86.3% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.3 | Population % aged 25–54: 39.4 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 394 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 489


weden is a major engine room of the Western world’s pop charts, famously exporting more pop music per head than any other country in the world. It is also the largest nation in the Nordic region, with a population of 9.9million, and a ticketing battleground, where the world’s major corporates slug it out for their share of a vigorous live business.

PRIMARY TICKETING Ticketmaster is the leader in the Swedish market, though AEG’s Axs.com powers the company’s Stockholm Live stable, with its five arenas – Ericsson Globe, Tele2 Arena, Friends Arena, Hovet, and Annexet. Eventim’s Venuepoint group recently rebranded its own Biljettforum brand as Eventim.se.

Base to Robyn and Zara Larsson, and a legion of backroom, cuttingedge songwriters and producers. Its live business is healthy, with Stockholm, and to a lesser extent Gothenburg, both major destinations for touring acts. In July this year, Guns N’ Roses broke the attendance record for a rock act at Ullevi Stadium in Gothenburg, with 64,289 people. Obviously, by sheer volume of events, domestic music has the edge overall. Ticketmaster’s Seljeset reports that the majority of events are for local acts, and Venuepoint’s Arnesen points to an increase in tours by local artists, “perhaps encouraged by the highly successful Håkan Hellström tour from 2017. We have seen a slight increase not only in concerts by local artists but also local comedians, and theatre productions have performed well this year,” he adds.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS DISTRIBUTION OF SALES None of Sweden’s high-street banks handle cash at all, these days, with cards and smartphones the order of the day, so you can imagine what’s happened to paper tickets. “Swedes are very tech savvy,” says Ticketmaster Sweden managing director Kristian Seljeset. “The vast majority buy their tickets online, and mobile tickets are the most popular type.” As elsewhere, young consumers have led the charge to an entirely paperless system, with under-25s preferring mobile tickets, and 25-and-overs clearly preferring a print-at-home ticket. And just as a rearguard of Swedish pensioners is highly concerned at the disappearance of cash, so the over-65s are still known to frequent box offices. “Scandinavia is in general driven by online sales,” says Venuepoint CEO Jens B. Arnesen. “We would expect up to 85% of sales to be online and not through the box office, and that will only continue to grow. Within online channels, it is primarily mobile devices that are used – anywhere from 60% and above, depending on venue and clientele.”

As well as Sweden’s apparently unstoppable shift away from cash, more than 3,000 Swedes have apparently had microchips implanted into their bodies, under a variety of schemes, allowing them to scan their own hands to enter homes, offices or gyms. Last year, the state-owned SJ rail-line started accepting biometric payments on board.

TAXES AND CHARGES Concerts fall into Sweden’s lowest tax band at 6%. Ticketing agents’ service fees go up to about 8%, though they can be lower, and tend to be included in the advertised ticket price.

VALUE OF MARKET Of the total Swedish music industry revenue in 2016, concert revenue accounted for 55%, or SEK5.5billion (€520m), up from 53% and SEK4.8bn (€454m) the year before, according to the most recent figures from Musiksverige. The Swedish music trade association calculates that over the course of seven years, between 2009 and 2016, the Swedish music industry’s domestic and export revenue increased by more than 50%.

SECONDARY TICKETING Viagogo operates in Sweden – though Ticketmaster’s Seatwave recently shut up shop – and, obviously, the primary business doesn’t like it much. “Secondary ticketing has remained a big issue in our market but has not grown or decreased in importance in the past 12 months,” says Venuepoint Sweden managing director Jay Sietsema. “Unfortunately, we still receive reports that some ticket buyers are being victimised by unscrupulous secondary ticketing sites.” Arvika-based, digital ticketing operator Tickster offers Tickster Resale, a strictly controlled, commission-free resale service for fans.


Organised in response to sexual assaults at music events, the inaugural women-only Statement Festival in Gothenburg was a huge hit

Sweden’s pop nous is rightly famous, from ABBA and Ace of



SWITZERLAND Languages: German, French, Italian, Romansh | Population (millions): 8.2 | Currency: Franc | GDP/Capita (US$): 61,400 Internet Users (millions): 7.3 | Smartphone penetration: 72.8% | Population % aged 15–24: 10.9 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.2 PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 366 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 398

tickets a month. One of the company’s founders, Reto Baumgartner, tells ITY that, while the market for big events is more or less saturated, with Ticketcorner, Starticket and Ticketmaster all fighting for a share, there is “an interesting market for small- and medium-sized events below this, where a couple of smaller ticketing providers compete, like Eventfrog, Ticketpark, Ticketino and even Eventbrite. There is still a lot of potential.” According to the country’s federal office for statistics, the Swiss market sells a total of 100m tickets annually, with an estimated worth of CHF3-4billion (€2-3bn). Andreas Angehrn, CEO of Ticketcorner, says 2018 posed somewhat of a challenge, as Switzerland, similar to other markets, lacked stadium concerts. Ed Sheeran’s double date at Zürich’s Stadion Letzigrund, which sold nearly 100,000 tickets, was one of the few exceptions.


With more than 100,000 annual visitors, OpenAir St. Gallen is one of Switzerland’s premiere events


round two-and-a-half years have passed since the world’s biggest live entertainment company, Live Nation, entered the Swiss market. More than one year has passed since that company acquired the country’s largest festival and one of Europe’s biggest hip-hop festival’s, Openair Frauenfeld, which attracts around 50,000 visitors per day.

George Egloff of Ticketmaster Switzerland reports that, “Our most important sales channels are online and mobile.” Collector Tickets are the main reason, paper tickets aren’t entirely a thing of the past yet, and the box office remains relevant to the country’s older demographic. Ticketcorner confirms the unabated shift toward online channels, including web browser and apps, claiming it sells more than 80% of its tickets via those methods. It also reports that elaborately designed fan tickets stand their ground. Most people in the country either print their tickets at home or carry them on their phones. Every industry professional from Switzerland that ITY spoke to, confirmed this. Both Ticketcorner and Ticketmaster sell most of their inventory for international acts, even though the former experienced a slight dip in favour of local repertoire in the past year. “It’s not a trend, but merely a snapshot,” says Angehrn.

SECONDARY TICKETING As with any market that is small in size, therefore limiting the amount of high-profile tours that stop by, sold-out shows are the exception rather than the rule. Therefore, secondary ticketing activity is limited, although that doesn’t mean it’s not happening. If a ticket is resold, one will most likely find it on Viagogo or on a few generic eBay-style websites such as Ricardo.ch or Anibis.ch.

PRIMARY TICKETING The big market shake-up, however, failed to materialise, particularly in the ticketing space, where CTS Eventim still rules with its Swiss operation Ticketcorner. The distance between first and second place, however, isn’t as pronounced as in other European markets, as Starticket is snapping at Eventim’s heels. Indeed, last year saw Eventim unsuccessfully try to acquire Starticket. Ticketmaster comes in at third place, ahead of local competitors that include Ticketino, Ticketpark and Infomaniak Entertainment. Since 2016, a new player has jumped into the pond in the form of Ticketfrog, now known as Eventfrog. The company sells ad space on its tickets and, as a result, doesn’t charge the usual fees, which can vary between 2% and 10% on top of a ticket’s face value in Switzerland, depending on the agency. Eventfrog, who won a Disruptor Award at this year’s Ticketing Business Awards, claims that it services 500 events and sells 100,000


CULTURAL ANALYSIS Switzerland is geographically divided into four different language regions, which, apparently, also affects people’s ticket agency preference. In the German-speaking part of the country, for instance, Ticketino is popular, whilst the French-speaking Swiss favour Infomaniak Entertainment, according to Titouan Meso of PETZI, the country’s club and festival association, which incidentally, also operates a non-profit ticketing system. The Swiss have always been known for doing their own thing and being sceptical towards anything coming into the country from outside. Meso explains that “a lot of small- and medium-sized venues and festivals are non-profit and volunteer-based, and work together to protect themselves against large corporations arriving in Switzerland. So most of their tickets are sold via Swiss companies.” However, the largest Swiss ticketing operation is German-owned.


TURKEY Languages: Turkish, Kurdish | Population (millions): 80.8 | Currency: Lira | GDP/Capita (US$): 26,900 | Internet Users (millions): 46.8 Smartphone penetration: 51.8% | Population % aged 15–24: 16.0 | Population % aged 25–54: 43.2 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 83 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 97

Charmenko worked with Biletix to sell tickets for their Play event in Istanbul, where The Chainsmokers headlined


perating a live entertainment business in a country in which journalists are being jailed for having the wrong opinion, is a challenge. The political turmoil in Turkey, however, hasn’t stopped the overall live entertainment business from growing, by a bit at least, according to Nick Hobbs of local events company Charmenko.

“Peer-to-peer exchange in Turkey happens on Facebook. People who would like to buy/sell tickets to a certain event post under the event or venue’s FB page. The exchange either happens with the two people meeting up, or a bank-wire in combination with sending PDF tickets.”

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES PRIMARY TICKETING According to PwC’s Entertainment & Media Outlook Report for 2018-2022, Turkey’s live music ticket market is currently worth around $80million (€69m) and is set to grow at an annual rate of 4% through 2022. However, as Elif Cemal, director of promoter Pozitif, points out, “recent severe currency fluctuations, weakening against the US dollar, and inflation, must also be taken into account. At current exchange rates, an average ticket in Turkish lira is now worth around $15 [€13].” She adds that, “The total market volume including cinema, sports, arts, theatre, family shows and theme parks is about 80million tickets, valued at around $300m [€259m].” Cemal also reports that Ticketmaster-owned Biletix is the main seller for non-cinema and non-sports events, shifting approximately 2.5m tickets and receiving $80m (€69m) in revenue. Charmenko’s data concurs with Cemal’s, with regard to Ticketmaster inhabiting the top rung of the ladder. Other competitors include Biletinial, Biletino, TixBox, Highfive, and Mobilet, the country’s first online-only ticketing agency, which also places an emphasis on selling through social media, and probably has the second biggest market share behind Biletix and ahead of TixBox.

SECONDARY TICKETING A “secondary ticketing market doesn’t really exist in Turkey as only a few events sell out and 99.5% don’t,” says TixBox’s Ataer Argüder. Viagogo and StubHub do operate in the country but official data on their market share is impossible to find. According to a company rep for Charmenko, people mainly use peer-to-peer exchanges to transfer their tickets if they can’t make a gig:

Most ticket sales in Turkey occur online, while traditional box office and call-centre sales are in decline. According to Statista, Turkey’s digital ticketing market is expected to grow at an annual rate of 24% per year through 2020. According to the general manager of Biletix/Ticketmaster, Kemal Erdine, “Most of Turkey’s ticket sales are made via online channels. The rest are distributed among retail stores, box offices, and our call centre.” He added that only a small percentage of tickets purchased are done so via mobile. “Nearly all of our tickets are physical, with the remaining print-at-home,” he explains. Cemal concurs: “Paper tickets are still the most popular, while new platforms like Mobilet, the social mobile ticketing app, are bringing in new behaviours.”

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Rock and pop are the most popular genres in Turkey, closely followed by classical music, according to Biletix data. The popularity of dance music has increased dramatically over the past few years, with electronic music festivals emerging in the country’s seaside cities. The most popular festival is Sónar in Istanbul, which sold out when it premiered in 2017, and then again this year. Most concert tickets sold in the country are for local acts, up to 80% in the case of Charmenko.

TAXES AND CHARGES Besides income tax and withholding tax upwards of 20% applied to artist fees and all artist-related production services, promoters are looking at an entertainment tax of 10%. VAT on tickets is 18%, except for theatre, which is 8%.



UNITED ARAB EMIRATES Languages: Arabic, English, Persian, Hindi, Urdu | Population (millions): 6.1 | Currency: Dirham | GDP/Capita (US$): 67,700 | Internet Users (millions): 5.4 | Smartphone penetration: 81.0% | Population % aged 15–24: 13.5 | Population % aged 25–54: 61.1

The new 18,000capacity Dubai Arena will dramatically transform the UAE’s live entertainment market when it opens in early 2019


he UAE remains a maturing market that has traditionally focused on a relatively small expat and tourist audience, though the calendar of incoming entertainment in the past year or so – Guns N’ Roses, Bryan Adams, Justin Bieber, Elton John, and man of the moment, Ed Sheeran – indicates ambition, and there are plenty of signs of diversification. Low oil prices and a bumpy local jobs market softened ticket sales in 2017, but the venue options in the key market of Dubai are improving and voices within the local business identify significant untapped potential for non-Western and non-music entertainment.

PRIMARY TICKETING Abu Dhabi has certainly had its moments, from the Rolling Stones to Rihanna, but Dubai is the main entertainment spot in the UAE. Local event guide Platinumlist is the market leader there and has a diversifying offering that includes concerts, as well as sport and other attractions. It has secured the ticketing for the UAE football league, as well as ticketing contracts in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, Muscat and Lebanon. Other operators in Dubai include bricks-and-mortar retailer Virgin Megastore, as well as Ticketmaster and Indian giant BookMyShow, which is notably strong in movies but also offers tickets for sport, music and exhibitions. The Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM) operates the ticketing system in Dubai, and ticketing companies, as well as hotels and airlines, all plug into the network. In Abu Dhabi, Flash, the prominent state-owned promoter, works exclusively with Ticketmaster.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Print-at-home tickets are common, not least because there is no home mail delivery. Mobile sales are becoming more important and physical locations remain strong, albeit taking a smaller share than online. “I have been an avid promoter of digital ticketing, but since the introduction of major bricks-and-mortar outlets to our system, sales have increased significantly,” says Vassiliy Anatoli, managing director of Platinumlist, which has 90 outlets through tie-ups with the UAE Exchange money-transfer chain, and 7-Eleven convenience stores. “I think the way tickets sell largely depends on the demographic of the audience,” he adds. “It is important to have as many channels as possible.”


VALUE OF MARKET Platinumlist estimates the value of the market in Dubai alone at about $120million (€104m) a year. There are no corresponding figures available for Abu Dhabi.

SECONDARY TICKETING Scalping is illegal in the Emirates, though tickets can be found for resale through classified ads.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES One of the weaknesses of the market in UAE has been its dependence on a narrow kind of Western entertainment, and representations of local talent are pretty scant. “Most of the acts that come to Dubai are international acts,” says Ticketmaster Middle East managing director David Grisham. “Local artists make up a small margin of the market.” But the variety is increasing and is also beginning to acknowledge other sections of the population. “We are witnessing a shift in the audience’s interest from general entertainment events, such as EDM or pop concerts, to more specific and narrowly targeted ones – for example K-pop and personal development events,” says Anatoli.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS F&B revenues are vital in Dubai, often exceeding revenue from ticket sales, so venues with strong hospitality options have a natural advantage. Venues such as Dubai Opera – which has self-promoted a wide range of fashion, comedy and family shows, as well as classical and pop performances – and the Emirate’s industrious beach and pool clubs have been the stand-out performers in recent years. AEG opens a 17,000-seat venue, the Dubai Arena, in 2019, which is likely to take the market up a notch. Nearly a decade ago, Abu Dhabi stole a march on its neighbour, venue-wise, with the 35,000-cap du Arena and 8,000-cap du Forum on Yas Island.

TAXES AND CHARGES In Dubai there is a 10% ticket tax that applies to all tickets, though this is not the case in other Emirates. The big news, however, is the introduction of a 5% VAT in the UAE from the beginning of 2018. Ticketing commission and convenience fees range anywhere from 5-15%.


UNITED KINGDOM Language: English | Population (millions): 65.6 | Currency: Pound Sterling | GDP/Capita (US$): 44,100 | Internet Users (millions): 61.1 Smartphone penetration: 73.6% | Population % aged 15–24: 11.9 | Population % aged 25–54: 40.6 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 1,465 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 1,480


here the UK live music business is concerned, there needs to be more than one way of evaluating its health. The UK remains a mighty live market, generating more than £1billion (€1.12bn) a year through primary channels, and creating far more through its central contribution to music tourism. Then again: the UK’s first live music census turned up a litany of worrying details about the financial well-being of small venues; secondary ticketing is a deep and complex problem; and the country is limping towards Brexit like someone who has shot themselves in the foot and is hoping it might still turn out to have been a good move, and not just a waste of a good sock. And all the while, Ticketmaster dominates the live entertainment sector and is still growing;

PRIMARY TICKETING When the Competition Commission investigated Ticketmaster’s merger with Live Nation in late 2009, it judged that the ticketing operator had a live music market share not exceeding 40%, and the nearly nine years since then have been boom times. Ticketmaster’s roster of venue box offices has grown significantly in that period – in 2018 alone, it won a tender that will bring the SMG arenas in Manchester, Leeds, Newcastle and Hull into the fold. Meanwhile, the Live Nation acquisition of Metropolis, Cuffe & Taylor, and the Isle of Wight Festival, have only beefed up Ticketmaster’s market share. Vivendi’s Nottingham-based See Tickets is generally held to be the UK runner-up, while numerous others pack out the rest of the market.

Björk helped AEG mark a successful inaugural year for its All Points East festival in London



AEG’s AXS numbers The O2 and SSE Arena Wembley among its venues; Eventbrite’s growth is impressive; and Eventim, while not at its mightiest in the UK, having lost the lucrative SMG contract, maintains a solid presence. Then there are indies such as Skiddle, Ticket Arena, Ticketline, Gigantic, and Resident Advisor; innovative start-ups such as Dice and Twickets; and operators from the venue world, such as Echo Arena Liverpool’s TicketQuarter, NEC Group’s The Ticket Factory, the Lowry Centre’s Quay Tickets and Alt.tickets which serves DHP Family’s venues, festivals and touring interests. For indies, diversification is essential, with many players offering third-party services, from cashless payments to data segmentation to entry systems, but all players are constantly aware of the multi faceted might of the corporates. “A main challenge is around the consolidation and mergers of music events to larger corporations that also own an in-house solution,” says Reshad Hossenally, managing director of Ticket Arena and Event Genius, which operates a white-label platform and has processed more than 4m cashless POS transactions at music and sport events. “It means the market is becoming controlled by two or three large corporations, resulting in less room for independents,” he adds. One of the leading indie ticketing partners is Ticketline, whose head of marketing James Lee says, “We sell millions of tickets per annum, over a broad spectrum of events across music, comedy, musicals, theatre, sports, festivals and outdoor events.” Among the 2018 Ticketline clients that Lee cites are Kendal Calling, Bluedot Festival, Victorious Festival, Comedy Central Live, Green Man Festival, 51st State Festival, Electric Fields, Cool Britannia, Geronimo Festival, Bestival, Camp Bestival, Common People Festival, Teddy Rocks Festival, Party at the Palace, Reading Beer Festival and Cotton Clouds Festival. Ticketline also serves various promoters including Kennedy

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Street, SSD Concerts, LCC Live, Giles Cooper Entertainment; numerous venues throughout the UK; and major West End theatre shows. “We pride ourselves on providing a personal experience with our clients, delivering bespoke and integrated ticketing solutions tailored directly for our clients,” says Lee. “Our flexible approach allows clients to integrate our innovative ticketing systems created for their event and achieve the growth to make their events a success.” Providing such bespoke tailoring to ticketing clients is a key strength of the independent sector. “The integrated promoter and ticketing powerhouses of the industry [pose] a major challenge for independent ticketing companies,” says The Ticket Factory’s director of ticketing Richard Howle. “They can wield their market influence and put pressure on their share of house, making it difficult for independent ticketing companies who aren’t venue- or promoter-aligned.” Amazon found that out the hard way. The e-commerce powerhouse is one of the most tenacious and well-resourced companies in the world, yet it met its match in the UK ticketing market. Amazon Tickets folded in March, less than 18 months after it promised to “disrupt the entire live entertainment experience.” However, that doesn’t mean that the trillion-dollar company won’t revisit the live entertainment sector in the future.

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES Numerous potential business models and distribution channels flutter around the UK market, from blockchain to social e-commerce, but for now the market remains essentially modern although relatively traditional, still consisting largely of online and mobile sales; paper and e-tickets; and established ticketing sites and apps. Amid all the talk of imminent disruption, many believe the market could easily stay that way for some time.


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See Tickets CEO Rob Wilmshurst denies that he has seen any new technology in the past 12 months that has felt like a threat. “Not really,” he says. “The blockchain stuff makes me chuckle – what’s that all about? Frankly, a lot of this new stuff just makes us look good and safe.” The major meaningful developments fall within predictable lines, with increasing numbers of people booking on the move via mobile. Ticketmaster’s UK mobile traffic has increased by 295% since 2013, while Gigantic reports that 69% of all its visitors have come via mobile devices in the past 12 months – a 27% increase in mobile visitors, with a corresponding 28% rise in mobile conversions. “When Ed Sheeran’s 2018 stadium tour went on sale, [mobile visitor numbers] rose to 72%, with a further 9% via tablet devices,” says Gigantic’s managing director Mark Gasson.

VALUE OF MARKET According to UK Music’s 2017 report, live music contributed £1bn (€1.12bn) in gross value added to the UK’s economy and sustained 28,538 jobs. 30.9m people attended live music events in the UK in 2016 – 18.4m local residents and 12.5m music tourists from the UK and abroad. The latter contributed £4bn (€4.5bn) in direct and indirect spending. A broader report by consultancy firm Deloitte bears out that reading, finding that live performances – including concerts, the theatre and other events – yielded £2.1bn (€2.4bn) in 2017, with concert-going accounting for more than half of the total. Those revenues were expected to grow by a further 7% this year.

SECONDARY TICKETING The secondary market in the UK has a way of overshadowing its primary counterpart, thanks to some hard-hitting TV documentaries and continual stories in the media, mostly concerning the business practices

of Viagogo. Certainly, it feels like all the big news in the ticketing sector is of the secondary variety, from the lengthy war against touts on the part of managers, competition authorities and certain politicians, to Ticketmaster’s closure of its Seatwave/GetMeIn operations. “Our number-one priority is to get tickets into the hands of fans,” says Ticketmaster UK managing director Andrew Parsons. “We know they are tired of seeing tickets being snapped up just to find them being resold for a profit on secondary websites, so we have taken action.” Ticketmaster isn’t leaving the secondary market entirely, having promised a new fan-to-fan exchange for selling tickets at face value plus 15% – similar to Eventim’s FanSale (10%), AEG’s AXS Marketplace (10%) that was announced in June 2018, See Tickets’ Fan2Fan resale platform (5%), or that of Twickets (12-15%). “There are more and more companies offering consumer-toconsumer resale at face value. That seems to be the way the market is developing, and hopefully there will be more progress along those lines,” says Adam Webb, campaign manager of anti-touting lobby group FanFair Alliance, which has spearheaded much of the rear-guard action against the excesses of the secondary market, putting the matter firmly on the UK Government’s agenda and taking aim at secondary accomplices such as Google. The news of Ticketmaster’s withdrawal from the more contentious end of the secondary business doesn’t necessarily put a big dent in the market, given that Viagogo lives on, as does the rather more compliant eBay-owned StubHub. Viagogo flies increasingly brazenly in the face of the authorities, with the Competition & Markets Authority running an enforcement investigation for widespread breaches of consumer law, amid considerable evidence that the platform fraudulently advertises tickets it doesn’t actually have. All the same, opponents of touting generally count the last year as


The popularity of Download Festival in the UK has prompted Festival Republic to take the brand to multiple countries around the world

a good one, citing better enforcement of consumer laws designed to provide consumer protection, as well as a clear groundswell of artists – including Sheeran, Arctic Monkeys, Iron Maiden, Gorillaz, Radiohead and Adele – who have been prepared to go to considerable lengths to keep their tickets out of the hands of industrial-scale online touts. “I think there is a bit more power in the hands of the artists now,” says Webb. “I think the campaign has had a pretty big impact on that. They can take decisions that stop the unauthorised resale of their tickets, and that’s quite a big change even if it’s probably early days.” In that spirit, The Charlatans recently partnered with Dice for a May run of shows in Northwich, with refunds for those who found they couldn’t go, and cancelled tickets for those caught attempting to resell at inflated prices. Twickets, which famously is Sheeran’s exclusive resale partner, has been endorsed by a string of artists including Adele, Arctic Monkeys, and Foo Fighters, and also works with sports teams, charities and festivals including End of The Road, Green Man and Standon Calling. The four-year-old company has latterly expanded into the US, Australia and mainland Europe, and recently turned its first profit. “We are never going to be the dominant player but we can provide a service to a certain kind of event-goer and a certain kind of act,’ says CEO Richard Davies.


INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES Given its diversity, the UK gets some of whatever’s going, and domestic music is in an ongoing healthy phase. According to the BPI, one in every eight albums bought worldwide in 2017 was by a British act, and UK artists accounted for 12.9% of all music purchased or streamed around the world. The figure was slightly up on 2016’s 12.5%, but short of the 17% registered at peak Adele in 2015.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS It’s worth noting that the UK retains some surprisingly antiquated practices, such as the late dispatch of tickets – the issue that generates the largest number of complaints to the Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers (STAR) each year. “Old thinking that it helps prevent touting and fraud has completely been debunked,” says Howle. “Action Fraud has reported that it only serves to create consumer uncertainty and an environment where fraudsters thrive.”

TAXES AND CHARGES VAT at 20% is payable on concert tickets in the UK. Booking or service charges are less standardised but hover at around 10-11% of the face value of a ticket, plus delivery, collection, and home-printing charges.







UNITED STATES OF AMERICA Languages: English, Spanish | Population (millions): 326.6 | Currency: Dollar | GDP/Capita (US$): 59,500 | Internet Users (millions): 246.8 Smartphone penetration: 68.4% | Population % aged 15–24: 13.3 | Population % aged 25–54: 39.5 | PwC estimated 2018 live music ticket sales US$millions: 8,246 | PwC forecast 2022 live music ticket sales US$millions: 10,044


hese days, change is the only constant in the US ticketing industry. Beyond consolidation and new technologies, the market continues to shift when it comes to fan engagement, security, the secondary market and payments. In a recent survey by the International Ticketing Association (INTIX), 61% of respondents reported significant change within their own organisations, covering everything from management moves and reorganisation; mergers and new or renovated venues; to new ticketing systems, an increased use of outsourcing, and more employees. Fans are being screened more thoroughly than ever before. Efforts extend well beyond bag checks, with airport-style metal detectors being used to help ensure fans get in and out of venues safely. Fingerprint scanning is also in play at major ballparks and sports arenas through CLEAR, a New York company best known for fast-tracking trusted travelers through security at various airports worldwide. The information that CLEAR owns goes far deeper than that collected by ticketing organisations, which is bound to create intense negotiations over data ownership in the future as such partnerships become even more common. Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin are hot

topics, too, but we’ve yet to see significant penetration of the US market. Still, these disruptive technologies are expected to pay a bigger role in the years ahead, especially when it comes to increasing customer security and creating transparency in transactions. The US is also seeing less of a distinction between primary and secondary markets. With secondary ticketing now an accepted practice, the industry has more of a primary feel overall, with direct partnerships between secondary-ticketing groups and venues, teams and organisations. At the same time, secondary ticketing is an adjunct business for Ticketmaster and other large primary players. While some artists are trying to push out the secondary players on a one-off basis, the scenario doesn’t seem much different than it was a decade ago. Meanwhile, the Federal Trade Commission caused waves in early October when it announced that it would be holding a workshop in March 2019 to examine online event ticket sales.

PRIMARY TICKETING Dozens of ticketing system organisations continue to compete for business across numerous genres, including concerts and festivals, pro sports, college athletics, performing arts and attractions, among

With its back-to-back weekend dates in April, Coachella Festival has taken on the mantle of season opener in the USA’s outdoor event calendar



others. Each ticketing organisation has its own strengths and standout features. Major players include, but are not limited to, Ticketmaster, Paciolan, Tickets.com, Tessitura Network, AudienceView, Etix, AXS, Patron Technology, SeatGeek and Eventbrite, whose New York Stock Exchange listing could elevate the company to become a major primary ticketing player. AXS, meanwhile, is up for sale, according to the Wall Street Journal, because its private equity investors, TPG and Rockbridge, are keen to divest their combined 62% stake in the company. AEG holds the remaining 38%. In May, former Ticketmaster CEO Nathan Hubbard introduced Rival, a start-up that aims to modernise management of ticket sales, customer relationships and security. To accomplish these goals, Rival believes event organisers must know the identity of each ticket holder. Its software keeps track of them using facial recognition technology. More simply put, event promoters, teams and organisations can require that their customers upload a photo to complete their ticket purchase. If tickets are resold, the new buyer would also have to submit a photo. On the day of the show or game, cameras would take photos to confirm a fan’s identity at the gate. Rival’s first customers are expected to begin using the software in 2019. Primary sellers are introducing and/or further leveraging innovative partnerships to maximise revenues and the overall event experience. Music and sports fans are opening their wallets to pay for seat upgrades via Experience by Live Nation. Uptix, which is fully integrated with Tickets.com, Paciolan and Ticketmaster, creates stored value tickets, which fans can use to pay for concessions and merchandise throughout a venue. FanMaker builds loyalty, enabling fans to earn points and redeem them for prizes, and it creates an additional revenue stream by allowing fans to buy their way to a higher ranking. And, ReplyBuy allows organisations to reach out with mobile ticket offers that fans can accept – and transact – in seconds. The US is seeing the advent of deeper packaging to satisfy growing demand from fans, with artists including Lady Gaga getting in on the act. She has teamed up with Ticketmaster to sell VIP packages to her upcoming Vegas residency at the end of the year. As reported by INTIX Access, Lady Gaga packages include a VIP table for up to eight guests, a VIP check-in service that allows fans to bypass the line, a dedicated cocktail server with service throughout the performance, and more. Artists are also packaging a variety of perks ranging from access to sound-checks, backstage tours, and pre-show parties, to meet-andgreets, individual photo ops, and limited-edition swag. These higher-priced tickets and packages, which can easily be sold online, will all contribute to a growing ticketing market. Packaging isn’t a new concept in the States, Citi Private Pass, Amex and Prime Sports have already achieved success, but new players continue to enter the field with new technologies and package options.

Taylor Swift’s 2018 Reputation stadium tour has seen her and Ticketmaster shatter sales records throughout North America

a company, that people would start affiliating their bad experience with Google, and [that they] wouldn’t search as much. That was a huge driver – our consumers – and we saw it through surveys, through feedback.” Now, to help level the playing field between primary and secondary sellers, any business that wants to resell event tickets through AdWords must first be certified by Google. This policy applies globally, across all accounts that advertise resale tickets. There are several steps for resellers to gain approval, including clear disclosure that they are a secondary marketplace. These rules also apply to the big resale players. Popular distribution channels like Groupon and TravelZoo continue to play a role in the US secondary market by helping to move excess inventory for shows that are not selling well.

VALUE OF MARKET SECONDARY TICKETING Secondary ticket sales continue to play a prominent role in the US, especially when it comes to music and sports. The four biggest secondary market players – StubHub, VividSeats, Ticketmaster and SeatGeek – also operate as primary sellers. In addition, there are still the traditional bricks-and-mortar brokers, as well as hundreds of other companies and individuals that operate cottage industries online. While it is not always obvious to the consumer if a particular company or broker is a sanctioned partner, Google has recently taken steps to crack down on those who try to take advantage of the ever-increasing number of people buying event tickets online. In his closing keynote at the INTIX 2018 conference in Baltimore, Mike Lorenc, head of industry − ticketing and live events at Google, discussed the new certification system designed to protect customers from scams and prevent potential confusion in the secondary market. Lorenc said the company felt compelled to act in order to protect consumers, as well as its own reputation. “There has been a dramatic increase […] in consumers being either misled or having a really bad experience,” said Lorenc. “Because 70% of tickets being sold online [are found via a Google search], we did worry, as

While the marketplace for entertainment and live events continues to grow, the total value of tickets being sold in the States is not definitively known. “As an industry, we have yet to determine how exactly to count the tickets so we can place a proper valuation on the size of the market,” says Maureen Andersen, president and CEO of INTIX. “Is it just the first time a ticket is sold at face value or do we include revenue from resellers? Upgrades, like those purchased through Experience by Live Nation, account for ticketing revenue, too, because fans are paying more money to sit in a better seat. Data is murky as we have lots of sources, but there is no one definitive reporting or data collection source. Plus, there is a traditional hesitancy of venues, promoters and organisations to consistently and regularly report sales.” Nevertheless, Grand View Research, Inc. recently issued a report that forecasts the global online event ticketing market could top $68billion (€58bn) by 2025.

INTERNATIONAL/DOMESTIC SPLITS AND GENRES The major genres in the United States are music, festivals, professional sports, college athletics, commercial and not-for-profit



performing arts, as well as general-admission entertainment, including museums and fairs. “American college athletics is really different from other countries. It’s absolutely monumental, attracting hundreds of thousands of fans. At the same time, festivals like Coachella and Bonnaroo draw some of the largest crowds in the world,” says Andersen. “In the arts, we are also seeing worldwide sensations like Hamilton, which is as big as any music act or sports team that we’ve ever seen. It has been staged across the US since it opened on Broadway in August 2015, and there is an insatiable demand for tickets. Hamilton will touch the lives of millions of people.”

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES While this comes as no surprise, the march to mobile continues in the States. The Grand View Research report discusses “a paradigm shift” from getting tickets at a venue ticket office to buying them from the comfort of home – or anywhere else that a fan chooses to transact. This has triggered an increase in online sales and across the larger ticketing market. Although the increase in online sales is common knowledge within the ticketing industry, what is noteworthy is the speed at which the shift is occurring, as well as the reasons for the sudden upswing. In recent years, mobile interfaces have become more user-friendly and the population is more connected than ever before, owing in part to an increase in Wi-Fi proliferation. At the same time, vendors and software developers have been placing greater emphasis on the online purchase experience so that fans can easily and quickly buy tickets to concerts, games and more. According to the report, mobile applications are expected to surpass desktop purchases by 2019.

New York’s iconic Madison Square Garden this year regained its crown as the most popular venue in the world


TAXES AND CHARGES Tax on tickets is determined by state and/or municipal government, so the rate and/or regulator charge(s) vary depending on location. Ticket fees and charges are a revenue stream for live entertainment organisations and are commonly accepted, but are often a hot-button issue amongst consumers. They can be levied in various forms including inside or blended charges (hidden in the ticket price), included charges (common way to collect taxes) and additional or exposed charges, like the per-ticket, per-order and/or per-item (to process hard-copy season tickets) fees that fans see applied to their purchases. Additionally, it is not unusual for organisations to charge a delivery fee for those wishing to receive printed tickets in the mail instead of opting for mobile delivery. White-label software vendors like Paciolan, Tessitura Network and AudienceView, among others, give entertainment organisations the ability to set their own fee structure, collect and keep their own fees, and decide when or whether to apply them.

CULTURAL ANALYSIS The overall fan experience is playing a bigger role than ever. This is creating demand for everything from easy, minimum-click, mobile purchasing to VIP package options that get fans closer to the artists, athletes and teams they love. “It is vital to know your customers so you can market to them at the right time, in the right place, with the right message and via their preferred communication channel,” says Andersen. “Millennials and baby boomers are today’s largest and most influential audience segments, yet the way we reach out and provide service to them has to be customised based on individual values and expectations.”




In 2019, the Forum will be held for the third time. More than 700 participants from Russia and foreign countries are expected to attend the MOSCOW TICKETING FORUM 2019. The main target of the Forum is building a communication platform for the key players of the ticketing technologies and solutions market in Russia: ticket operators, service providers and agents of the ticketing market, the largest sport event, concert and festival organizers, museums, theaters, exhibition spaces, sport clubs and stadiums. 20th-21st March, 2019 | Otkritie Arena, Moscow, Russia http://ticketingforum.ru/en

Now coming into its third summit, EuroLatam is the most important event of the sports industry in Latin America and the only one in generating strategic ties with Europe. It is an initiative that promotes continuous improvement, innovation and collaboration; in a close and direct environment for decision makers. 26th-27th November 2018 | Hotel Sheraton, Santiago, Chili http://www.eurolatamsummit.com



Because the rapid and constant changes in the ticketing sector related to new digital practices and dematerialization require the realization of a professional meeting tailored to the specificities of the French context allowing producers / broadcasters and room managers to meet to find the answers to the many questions they ask themselves. Because the highlighting of ticketing professionals through a dedicated forum is a fundamental step in the work of “decompartmentalization” of the sector conducted for five years by MyOpenTickets. The Forum of the ticketing takes place in the heart of Paris, near the Republic, it takes place in a friendly and modern space of 700 m2 on two floors. For two days, participants will have access to a village of startups, conferences, workshops, showrooms, corners and a terrace open on the rooftops of Paris at our partner Paris Event / La Fabrique Événementielle. https://www.forumbilletterie.fr

The INTIX Annual Conference & Exhibition is for anyone directly or indirectly involved in ticketing the arts, professional sports, college athletics, arenas, fairs and festivals, ticket distribution, and entertainment management. Major suppliers are represented at the exhibition. Organizations and vendors alike use the conference to network with established colleagues and make valuable new connections. In this highly competitive marketplace, INTIX is where ticketing professionals go to make the right connections, gain key insight from peers and learn what’s next in the industry. From live conferences and job listings to a robust variety of educational resources, membership in INTIX is an investment that pays great dividends over the entire course of a career. 29th–31st January 2019 https://www.intix.org



Ticket Summit brings together hundreds of industry leaders and small business owners for the ticketing and live entertainment industries for a one-of-a-kind networking event. From industry panel sessions and keynotes to a comprehensive trade show, Ticket Summit provides you with the industry tools and information you need to succeed! Ticket Summit is the leading conference and trade show for ticketing and live entertainment executives and small business owners. 8th–10th July 2019 http://www.ticketsummit.org

Eurosonic Noorderslag (ESNS) is a non-profit, European artists only, 100% showcase festival and music conference. ESNS is the key exchange and networking platform for European music, with a proven track record for helping new acts break into the international music scene. Selling out each year ESNS attracts over 4.000 professional delegates, including 400 international festivals, and showcases around 350 European artists for over 40.000 visitors total. 16th–19th January 2019 https://esns.nl/



COMPANY INDEX 0–9 228 (CN) 228.com.cn 247 Tickets (CN) 247tickets.com A A2Z Tickets (US) a2z-tickets.com Ace Ticket (US) aceticket.com Active Tickets (NL) activetickets.com Adticket (DE) adticket.de AleBilet (PL) alebilet.pl Alibaba (CN) alibaba.com All Access (AR) allaccess.com.ar All Events Tickets (US) alleventstix.com Alt.tickets (UK) alttickets.com APACTix (SG) apactix.com Art-Mate (HK) art-mate.net Asia Music Fest (HK) asiamusicfest.com Atrapalo (INT’L) atrapalo.com AudienceView (INT’L) audienceview.com Avance Pay (CH) avance-pay.com Aventus Systems (INT’L) aventus.io AXS (INT’L) axs.com B Baltic Ticket Holdings (INT’L) piletilevi.ee Bgbileti (BG) bgbileti.bg Biļešu Paradīze (LV) bilesuparadize.lv Biļešu Serviss (LV) bilesuserviss.lv Bilet.bg (BG) bilet.bg Bilet.ro (RO) bilet.ro Bilete (RO) bilete.ro Biletiastana (KZ) biletiastana.kz Biletinial (TR) biletinial.com Biletino (TR) biletino.com Biletix (TR) biletix.com Bilettix (DE) bilettix.net Bilheteira Online (PT) bol.pt Bilietai (LT) bilietai.lt Bilietu Pasaulis (LT) bilietupasaulis.lt Biljettforum (SE) eventim.se Billet (DK) billet.dk Billetlugen (DK) billetlugen.dk Billetportalen (NO) billettportalen.no BilletRéduc (FR) billetreduc.com Billetten (DK) billetten.dk Billetto (INT’L) billetto.com Billettservice (NO) ticketmaster.no Blueticket (PT) blueticket.pt Bohemia Ticket (CZ) bohemiaticket.cz Boletia (MX) boletia.com BookingShow (IT) bookingshow.it BookMyShow (INT’L) bookmyshow.com Box Office (IT) boxol.it Brown Paper Tickets (INT’L) brownpapertickets.com C Carousell (SG) sg.carousell.com Carrefour Spectacles (FR) spectacles.carrefour.fr Citizen Ticket (UK) citizenticket.co.uk Cityline (HK) cityline.com Codetickets (ES) codetickets.com Computicket (ZA) online.computicket.com Concert (RU) concert.ru Coras (INT’L) coras.io

Crowd Connected (UK) crowdconnected.co.uk CTS Eventim (INT’L) eventim.de Culturall (AT) culturall.com D Damai (CN) damai.cn Dash Tickets (NZ) dashtickets.co.nz Der Ticketservice (DE) derticketservice.de Dice (UK) dice.fm Digitick (FR) digitick.com Dilyaver (RU) dilyaver.ru Dot Tickets (INT’L) tickets.tickets DTCM (AE) visitdubai.com Dutchband (INT’L) dutchband.com E e-Tickets (HK) e-Tickets.hk e+ (JP) eplus.jp Easy Ticket Service (DE) easyticket.de eBilet (PL) ebilet.pl El Corte Ingles (ES) elcorteingles.es Enta (INT’L) enta.com EntradaFan (AR) entradafan.com.ar Entradas (ES) entradas.com Entradas 365 (ES) entradas365.com Etix (US) etix.com Event Genius & Ticket Arena (UK) eventgenius.co.uk Eventbrite (INT’L) eventbrite.com Eventfrog (CH) eventfrog.ch Eventick (BR) sympla.com.br Evento (INT’L) evento.com Evopass (IE) evopass.io F Fair Ticket Solutions (CA) fairticketsolutions.com Fan Engagement (INT’L) fangage.me Fandango (BR, US) fandango.com FanFair Alliance (UK) fanfairalliance.org fanSALE (DE) fansale.de Ferris Wheel (CN) moretickets.com Festik (FR) festik.net Flavorus (US) flavorus.com Fnac (INT’L) fnac.com Fnac Spectacles (FR) fnacspectacles.com France Billet (FR) francebillet.com Front Gate Tickets (US) frontgatetickets.com Futuretix (IE) futuretix.ie G Gateway Ticketing (US) gatewayticketing.com Get Me In! (UK) getmein.com Gigantic (UK) gigantic.com global event technologies (AT) get.systems Grassroots Venues Tickets (UK) grassrootsvenues.tickets Guestme (FR) guestme.live Guts Tickets (NL) guts.tickets H HighFive (TR) highfive.com.tr HK Clubbing (HK) hkclubbing.com HK Ticketing (HK) hkticketing.com Hotdog Tix (HK) hotdogtix.com I iabilet (RO) iabilet.ro Infomaniak Entertainment (CH) infomaniak-entertainment.ch


Ingresse (BR) ingresse.com Ingresso Rápido (BR) ingressorapido.com.br Ingresso (BR) ingresso.com Insider (IN) insider.in Intellitix (INT’L) intellitix.com Interticket (HU) jegy.hu InTickets (RU) intickets.ru INTIX (US) intix.org iTicket (NZ) iticket.co.nz iTickets (ZA) itickets.co.za J Jegy (HU) hegy.hu JetTicket (DE) jetticketsoftware.com K Kassir (KZ) kassir.kz Kassir (RU) kassir.ru Keypz (UK) kepz.com Koncertyastana (KZ) koncertyastana.kz Kupat Tel Aviv (IL) 2207.kupat.co.il Kvitki (BY) kvitki.by Kyazoonga (INT’L) kyazoonga.com L Last Tix (AU) lasttix.com.au Lawson HMV Entertainment (JP) lawson.jp Lippupalvelu (FI) ticketmaster.fi Lippupiste (FI) lippu.fi LivePass (AR) livepass.com.ar LivePass (BR) livepass.com.br LiveTickets (RO) livetickets.ro M Maoyan-Weiying (CN) maoyan.com Marktplaats (NL) marktplaats.nl Mobile Media Content (INT’L) mobilemediacontent.com Mobilet (TR) mobilet.com Moretickets (CN) moretickets.com Moshtix (AU) moshtix.com.au Music Glue (INT’L) musicglue.com Muzbilet (RU) muzbilet.ru München Ticket (DE) muenchenticket.de Mypiao (CN) mypiao.com Myticket (DE) myticket.de MyTicket (RO) myticket.ro Myticket (UK) myticket.co.uk Mtime (CN) mtime.com MyWayTicket (IT) mywayticket.it N Never Empty (ES) neveremptytickets.com NTK (NL) ntk.nl Ntry (AT) ntry.at Nuomi (CN) nuomi.com NuTickets (UK, ZA) nutickets.com Ocesa (MX) ocesa.com.mx Oeticket (AT) oeticket.com Onebox (ES) oneboxtm.com OnlineticketShop (INT’L) onlineticketsshop.com Oxynade (INT’L) oxynade.com P Paciolan (US) paciolan.com Panda Ticket (FR) panda-ticket.com Parter (RU) parter.ru Passolig (TR) passolig.com.tr Patron Technology (US) patrontechnology.com

INDEX Paylogic (INT’L) paylogic.com Peatix (JP, SG) peatix.com PeerTracks (CA) peertracks.com Pelago (HK) pelago.events Petzitickets (CH) petzitickets.ch Piao (CN) piao.com Piao88 (CN) piao88.com Piaobuy (CN) piaobuy.com Piktical (UK) piktical.com Piletilevi (EE) piletilevi.ee Placeminute (FR) placeminute.com Plankton (ZA) plankton.mobi Platinum List (AE) dubai.platinumlist.net Playpass (INT’L) playpass.be Ponominalu (RU) ponominalu.ru Pramogaukit (LT) pramogaukit.lt Predpredaj (SK) predpredaj.zoznam.sk Předprodej (CZ) predprodej.cz Public.gr (GR) public.gr PuntoTicket (CL) puntoticket.com Q QPAC (AU) qpac.com.au Quay Tickets (UK) quaytickets.com Quicket (ZA) quicket.co.za R Radario (INT’L) radario.co Rang1Tickets (NL) rang1tickets.nl RazorGator Tickets (US) razorgator.com Redkassa (RU) redkassa.ru Reservix (CH, DE) reservix.de Resident Advisor (UK) residentadvisor.net Rival (US) rival.co S SAP (DE) sap.com/germany SeatGeek (INT’L) seatgeek.com Seats.io (INT’L) seats.io Seatwave (Europe) seatwave.com SecuTix (CH, ES, FR) secutix.com See Tickets (UK) seetickets.com SemHora (BR) semhora.com.br Showbiz (AU) showbiz.com.au Simplyitickets (CA) simplyitickets.com SISTIC (SG) sistic.com.sg Six Dots (CZ) ticketon.cz Skiddle (UK) skiddle.com Songkick (INT’L) songkick.com SmartTicket (CN) smartticket.cn Spectra Ticketing (US) spectraexperiences.com Sports Hub Tix (SG) sportshub.com.sg Stager (NL) stager.nl Starticket (CH) starticket.ch Stodola (PL) stodola.pl StubHub (INT’L) stubhub.com Superboletos (MX) superboletos.com Swisscom (CH) swisscom.ch Sympla (BR) sympla.com.br T Tao Piao Piao (CN) alibaba.com Taquilla Mediaset (ES) taquillamediaset.es Tele Ticket Service (BE) teleticketservice.com TengoEntradas (ES) tengoentradas.com Tessitura Network (US) tessituranetwork.com The Ticket Factory (UK) theticketfactory.com The Ticket Fairy (INT’L) theticketfairy.com The Ticket Group (AU) ttg.com.au ThePointOfSale (CA) thepointofsale.com Tibbaa (NL) tibbaa.com

Tick&Live (FR) tickandlive.com Ticket Arena (UK) ticketarena.co.uk Ticket Camp (JP) ticketcamp.net Ticket Direct (NZ) ticketdirect.co.nz Ticket Liquidator (ES) ticketliquidator.com Ticket Pia (JP) t.pia.jp Ticket Quarter (UK) ticketquarter.co.uk Ticket Ryutsu Center (JP) ticket.co.jp Ticket-line (AE) ticket-line.ae Ticket360 (BR) ticket360.com.br Ticketac (FR) ticketac.com TicketArena (GR) ticketarena.gr TicketArt (CZ) vstupenky.ticket-art.cz Ticketbis (INT’L) ticketbis.net Ticketebo (AU) ticketebo.com.au Ticketbooth (AU) ticketbooth.com.au Ticketbooth (NZ) ticketbooth.co.nz Ticketbande (DE) ticketbande.de TicketCo (NO) ticketco.no Ticketcorner (CH) ticketcorner.ch Ticketea (INT’L) ticketea.com Ticketek (INT’L) ticketek.com TicketExchange (US) ticketexchangebyticketmaster.com Ticketflap (HK) ticketflap.com Ticketfly (INT’L) ticketfly.com Ticketgenie (IN) ticketgenie.in Tickethall (DE) tickethall.de Tickething (INT’L) tickething.com Tickethour (GR) buy.tickethour.com Tickethouse (GR) tickethouse.gr Ticketino (CH) ticketino.com Ticketland (RU) ticketland.ru TicketLine (PT) ticketline.sapo.pt Ticketline (UK) ticketline.co.uk Ticketmarket (LT) ticketmarket.lt Ticketmaster (INT’L) ticketmaster.com Ticketmaster+ (US) ticketmaster.com/verified Ticketmatic (BE, NL) ticketmatic.com TicketNetwork (ES) ticketnetwork.com TicketNew (IN) ticketnew.com Ticketon (CZ) ticketon.cz Ticketon (KZ) ticketon.kz TicketOne (IT) ticketone.it Ticketpark (CH) ticketpark.ch Ticketplan (UK) ticketplangroup.com Ticketpoint (NL) ticketpoint.nl TicketPony (ZA) ticketpony.co.za Ticketportal (AR) ticketportal.com.ar Ticketportal (BG) ticketportal.bg Ticketportal (CH) ticketportal.com Ticketportal (INT’L) ticketportal.sk Ticketpro (INT’L) ticketpro.com TicketPro (ZA) ticketpro.co.za Tickets 365 (CN) tickets365.com.cn Tickets Cloud (RU) ticketscloud.org Tickets.com (US) tickets.com Tickets.ie (IE) tickets.ie Tickets4Fun (BR) ticketsforfun.com.br Ticketscript (INT’L) company.ticketscript.com TicketServ (INT’L) ticketserv.com TicketServices (GR) ticketservices.gr TicketsNow (US) ticketsnow.com Ticketsolve (IE) ticketsolve.com TicketSource (INT’L) ticketsource.co.uk Ticketstream (CZ) ticketstream.cz TicketStreet (JP) ticket.st

TicketSwap (INT’L) ticketswap.com TicketTickster (SE) tickster.com TicketToad (US) tickettoad.com TicketTribune (NL) tickettribune.nl Ticketure (NZ) ticketure.com Ticketweb (INT’L) ticketweb.com Tickx (UK) tickx.co.uk Ticnet (SE) ticketmaster.se Tiketa plius (LT) tiketa.lt Tiketore (JP) tiketore.com Tiketti (FI) tiketti.fi Tikly (US) tickly.co Tipo Ticketing (CH) tipo.ch Tixa (HU) tixa.hu Tixbox (AE, TR) tixbox.com Tixsa (ZA) tixsa.co.za Tixserve (UK) tixserve.com TixTec (CH) ticketmaster.ch Tking (CN) moretickets.com TLS Boca Systems (INT’L) bocasystems.com Tokenly (US) tokenly.com TokenStub (INT’L) tokenstub.io TopTicketshop (BE, NL) topticketshop.nl TopTix (INT’L) toptix.com Townscript (IN) townscript.com TuEntrada (AR) tuentrada.com Twickets (INT’L) twickets.co.uk U Universe (INT’L) universe.com Urbtix (HK) urbtix.hk V Vente-privee (FR) vente-privee.com Venuepoint (DK) venuepoint.net Viagogo (INT’L) viagogo.com Vibe Tickets (UK) vibetickets.co.uk Viberate (INT’L) viberate.io VisionOne (INT’L) accesso.com Viva (GR) viva.gr VivaTicket (IT) vivaticket.it VividSeats (US) vividseats.com W Webtickets (ZA) webtickets.co.za WeDemand! (INT’L) wedemand.com Weezevent (FR) weezevent.com WeGotTickets (UK) wegottickets.com Wegow (ES) wegow.com white label eCommerce (DE) the-white-label.com Wien-Ticket (AT) wien-ticket.at Worldticketshop (INT’L) worldticketshop.com Y Yandex Tickets (RU) yandex.ru YPlan (INT’L) yplanapp.com Z Zakazbiletov (KZ) zakazbiletov.kz. Zappa Group (IL) zappa-club.co.il Zepass (FR) zepass.com

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