PROFILE

MY SUBSCRIPTION

LOGOUT

x

The latest industry news to your inbox.

    

I'd like to hear about marketing opportunities

    

I accept IQ Magazine's Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy

ITR SLB 1

ITR SLB 2

ITR SLB 3

Publication

Market Report: Belgium

The annual guide to the global live entertainment ticketing business
Click the interactive map below to explore the top 40 global markets

Belgium is broadly divided between Flemish-speaking Flanders and French-speaking Wallonia, with Brussels a third region belonging to neither. In its ticketing market, longstanding incumbents vie with international interests.

 

PRIMARY TICKETING

Live Nation has been gathering remarkable strength in Belgium in recent years. Its festivals include Rock Werchter, Dour, Pukkelpop, and Graspop, and in April 2019 it added the venues of the Sportpaleis Group, among them the 23,000- capacity Sportpaleis arena in Antwerp, as well as the 8,050- cap Lotto Arena, the 8,000-cap Forest National in Brussels, and the 18,000-cap Trixxo (formerly Ethias) Arena in Hasselt.

Sportpaleis Group’s Tele Ticket Service, the long-time Belgian market leader, which launched in 1986 as the first Belgian ticket reservation system, fell outside the deal, but it continues to work with be•at, the newly rebranded parent company for all the above venues.

So, too, does Ticketmaster Belgium, which is part of Ticketmaster’s new North West Europe unit, together with the Netherlands and Denmark – a new configuration of which Ticketmaster North West Europe RVP Jakob Lund is proud.

“This new structure opens up opportunities to service clients and fans across the region and develop and support new initiatives and products”

“This new structure opens up opportunities to service clients and fans across the region and develop and support new initiatives and products,” says Lund, who is managing director for the three territories.

Also present in the Belgian market is See Tickets, which entered Benelux in 2018 via its acquisition of Paylogic from LiveStyle. Iconic Brussels venue the Ancienne Belgique operates its own online ticketing platform and works hard with its data, bundling it into Salesforce to drive relevant recommendations, reminder emails, pre-show information, and post-show follow-ups with photos, videos, and tips for similar concerts.

 

DISTRIBUTION OF SALES

Like most European markets, Belgium is inexorably going mobile. “Digital tickets now account for the majority of tickets we distribute to fans in Belgium,” says Lund.

“Digital tickets now account for the majority of tickets we distribute to fans in Belgium”

“Our top opportunity is to increase digital ticketing adoption, which accelerated during the pandemic.”

 

VALUE OF MARKET

Statista offers data that puts the Belgian live events sector at €185.80m in 2022. “Live entertainment is doing very well in Belgium, and the ticketing industry is strong and stable,” says Lund.

Belgium is renowned for its vibrant festival scene, including Pukkelpop, seen here in 2019

 

SECONDARY TICKETING

Secondary selling of tickets above face value is forbidden in Belgium except by vendors accredited by the event organiser.

In 2016, a Belgian judge ordered the country’s Internet service providers to block access to three secondary ticket outlets in response to widespread fraud by resellers. Nevertheless, the trade in concert tickets on parallel markets is commonplace.

 

INTERNATIONAL / DOMESTIC SPLITS & GENRES

The 2,000-capacity Ancienne Belgique topped Pollstar’s European clubs league for a second consecutive year in 2020, grossing $6.05m (€6.05m ) and selling 207,000 tickets.

The venue stands as a beacon for Belgian talent: typically, 40% of AB performers are Belgian, and the venue coordinates the Liveurope platform, which brings together concert halls in support of booking European artists.

Belgium is two markets within one border, and popular Flemish acts can often have little success in Wallonia, and vice versa. Prominent Belgian acts with international profile include Angèle and Stromae, both from Brussels. The former broke the latter’s record for weeks atop the Belgian singles chart with her 2018 single Tout Oublier.

 

CULTURAL ANALYSIS

Belgium is a world centre for huge festivals with massive international appeal. Monster Belgian dance festival Tomorrowland lost a reported €25m from festivals cancelled in 2020 and 2021, but sold out 600,000 passes for its 2022 comeback events (which took place over three weekends in July) in just ten minutes, having added a third weekend and negotiated a 10% discount on 2019-level headliner fees.

“It’s an important part of a solution of being healthy again”

“It’s an important part of a solution of being healthy again,” says founder Michiel Beers. “Does it cover a two-year loss? No.”

 

TAXES & CHARGES

There’s VAT of 6% on Belgian tickets and service fees range from 5% to 20% of face value.

Our other publications