Market distortions – ticketing

Sorry for the avalanche of post on the ticketing industry – as you’ll guess, I am immersed in the space at present with one of our ventures.

Some things you may not know

– When you whinge about the “high” booking fees charged by agencies, some promoters actually charge the agents a booking fee on top of the face value e.g. of the £5 you pay, £2 could be an enforced kickback to the promoter levied aside from the ticket price. This isn’t made public for a myriad of reasons.

– Most venues oblige artists/promoters to share 40-60% of the allocation of tickets with them to distribute via channels they have got arrangements with. e.g. Ticketmaster has deals in place with many venues to take a majority of the tickets to events they host. So even if the artist wants to make all the tickets available to their fan club, they may not be able to.

– Credit card companies take a sizeable chunk in merchant fees from ticket agents, judging them to be highly risky. 3%+ is not uncommon out of booking fee norms of 10-12%.

For two great posts on ticketing markets have a look at part one and two of a piece by Sean Park. With similar backgrounds, perhaps it’s unsurprising that Sean and I think alike on such matters.


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