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PE firm GTCR invests in Vivid Seats

Following earlier reports its entire business was up for sale, Vivid is instead welcoming another private-equity backer in the form of Chicago's GTCR

By Jon Chapple on 17 May 2017

Vivid Seats HQ, Chicago

Vivid's basketball-themed Chicago HQ


image © Leopardo Construction

Chicago-based private-equity firm GTCR today announced it is to make a “strategic investment” in secondary ticketing site Vivid Seats.

Vivid, also based in Chicago, was reported in March to be seeking a buyer for its ticket resale business, believed to be the third largest in the US after Ticketmaster and StubHub.

GTCR, whose other tech investments include include software developer Cision, billboard ad company Fairway Outdoor Advertising, broadcast advertising platform GTN and driver-safety business Lytx, says its cash will help to “grow and develop the company’s technology and service offerings” – although existing investor Vista Equity Partners will maintain a “significant ownership stake”.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but Vista is believed to value Vivid Seats at around US$1.5 billion.

“GTCR brings significant resources and experience in building industry leading companies, and we believe they will be a valuable resource in the long-term expansion of our business”

“The Vivid Seats team has built a tremendous business that is well-positioned for long-term success,” comments GTCR managing director David Donnini. “The impressive growth over the last decade is a testament to their customer service, operating excellence and proprietary technology platform.”

In a joint statement, Vivid co-founders Jerry Bednyak and Eric Vassilatos add: “We are excited to partner with GTCR in the next stage of Vivid Seats’ evolution. GTCR brings significant resources and experience in building industry leading companies, and we believe they will be a valuable resource in the long-term expansion of our business.

“We would also like to thank Vista for their support and look forward to their continued partnership.”

 


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