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Resale marketplace Tixel targets further expansion

Founded in Australia in 2018, the company's partners include festivals such as Beyond the Valley, Boardmasters, Dekmantel and Sonus

By James Hanley on 12 Jul 2022

Zac Leigh

image © Naomi Lee Beveridge

Australian ticket resale marketplace Tixel is targeting further international growth following a successful funding round and European launch.

Founded in 2018, the company’s partners include festivals such as Australia’s Beyond the Valley, the UK’s Boardmasters, End of the Road, 2000 Trees, Strawberry Fields, Dekmantel in the Netherlands and Sonus in Croatia, along with artists such as Tame Impala, and primary ticketing platforms Eventbrite, Eventix and Oztix.

“We are a global platform” Tixel CEO and co-founder Zac Leigh tells IQ. “Australia and New Zealand is where we started and that really set the foundations. Now we’re in the UK and Europe, and we also work with event organisers in the US. Anywhere there’s an event, we can help.”

A self-styled “honest resale marketplace”, Tixel verifies tickets in real-time to detect and reject fake tickets before they’re listed and create a fresh barcode for the new buyer. Prices are capped at 10% above face value, and Leigh stresses that the firm has a track record of reducing refund requests and no-shows.

“We believe that buying and selling tickets should always be safe, easy and honest,” he says. “We’re set up to make sure that fans have an amazing and safe experience from when they buy a ticket to when they walk in the gate.”

“Part of our technology is focused on the people putting on the show”

Product features include a customised backend for event organisers that provides actionable pricing and audience data, and proprietary dynamic waitlist technology that creates a real-time repository of interested buyers.

“Unfortunately, we still see a lot of people rock up to the gates with fake tickets. That’s a lost night and is pretty heart wrenching, so we’re trying to solve that problem,” notes Leigh. “But what makes us unique is that we have an organiser-centric mentality. Part of our technology is focused on the people putting on the show. We work directly with ticketing companies and event organisers to support them throughout the whole campaign and make sure they have an amazing experience as well.”

Tixel landed in the UK in late 2021, having raised A$1.5 million (€1m) last year in a funding round that included a number of leading concert businesses and music investors. Promoters Unified Music Group and I Oh You, labels Rose Avenue and Future Classic and investment firms Alberts and Galileo Ventures were among to participate.

“One of the big things for us was getting people on board who actually understand the problems faced and appreciate it from an industry perspective,” says Leigh. “Some of our investors are event organisers and can see the value that our platform can provide. That’s exciting in the sense that what we’re doing is obviously resonating – they obviously see the importance of having a strong resale marketplace and the value that we can provide.

“The market is pretty dynamic and we’re pumped at what the future has to hold. Global expansion is a big focus for us – the US is definitely on the radar – but positioning ourselves as being uniquely placed to be able to solve a lot of the problems in the post-Covid era is important. Things are changing and we see a lot of opportunity there.”

“Ticketing has been stuck in the past”

Tixel was recognised at last week’s Ticketing Business Awards at Emirates Old Trafford, Manchester, where it was presented with the Product Innovation Award for “a product or service that has uniquely transformed and improved the way ticketing entities do business”.

“Technology is slowly catching up,” adds Leigh. “Historically, ticketing has been stuck in the past and Covid acted as a catalyst in kickstarting this new wave of innovation, and I think that that’s going to continue.

“There are a whole lot of new promoters putting on events in new, creative ways and we’re happy to be a part of it, but I think there are going to be a lot of new problems that come up and a lot of new solutions moving forward: whether that be pricing, whether that be digital ticket capability, or whether that be understanding more about the audience, there are always opportunities to innovate and I think that we’re going to see a lot of the gaps filled.”


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