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StubHub to wind-up San Fran and Shanghai offices

StubHub has revealed plans to close its San Fransisco and Shanghai offices by the end of the year, and lay off the majority of employees based in each location.

According to CEO Eric Baker, the decision comes as the ticket resale platform looks to optimise and streamline its operations following Viagogo’s takeover of the company.

Baker says that the business will focus on building its new offices in New York and Los Angeles and using these locations as key hubs for in-person work.

StubHub announced the news via a post on LinkedIn, which included a copy of the letter that Baker sent to employees.

The CEO wrote: “This is never easy news to share. Those who are impacted by these changes have already been contacted by our People Team about their individual departure plans.

“To the team that remains, it’s growth time”

“We are grateful for the contributions of these employees and wish them well as they go on to their next chapters.

“To the team that remains, it’s growth time. Moving forward, our work will focus on in-person participation in our offices around the world, which – in addition to LA and NY – will still include locations in Utah, Switzerland, Ireland and Taiwan.”

In September last year, Switzerland-headquartered Viagogo got the green light from the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to complete its takeover of StubHub.

The deal was approved after it was agreed that StubHub would sell its business outside of North America – including the UK – to investment firm Digital Fuel Capital LLC for an undisclosed sum.

Viagogo originally agreed the purchase of eBay’s ticketing division StubHub for $4.05bn in cash in February 2020.

 


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Viagogo sells StubHub business outside N.America

Viagogo has sold its StubHub business outside of North America – including the UK – to investment firm Digital Fuel Capital LLC for an undisclosed sum.

The sale was approved by the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and completed on 3 September, after secondary ticketing giant Viagogo was forced to sell its international business due to competition concerns.

Viagogo acquired eBay’s ticketing division StubHub for $4.05 billion in cash in February 2020.

According to the CMA, a merger between the two companies would have resulted in a substantial lessening of competition in the secondary ticketing market, leading to higher prices and limited option for fans.

“We look forward to sharing more details about the integration of the two businesses”

Viagogo assuaged competition concerns by proposing the “divestment to an upfront buyer of StubHub’s European and certain other international legal entities”.

The sale of StubHub International to Digital Fuel Capital now brings the merger investigation to a close, says the CMA.

The Massachusetts-based investment firm will add StubHub International to its portfolio which consists of Artifact Uprising, Boutique Brands, BuyAutoParts, Guild Brands, National Tree Company, Outdoor Adventure Brands, Renovation Brands, RugsUSA, and Seattle Coffee Gear.

“We appreciate the CMA’s role in bringing the merger to this conclusion, and we look forward to sharing more details about the integration of the two businesses with our loyal customers and partners very soon,” says Cris Miller, VP of business development, Viagogo.

“Viagogo is a website with a long and storied history of breaking the law”

“As the live events industry emerges from the coronavirus pandemic, robust competition in the ticketing market is needed more than ever and Viagogo will continue to take its essential role in the live events industry very seriously. Viagogo and StubHub will always remain committed to working with regulators, while providing safe and secure platforms for people to buy and sell tickets to events all over the world.”

In 2021 so far, Viagogo has been investigated for violating laws in countries including Austria, Italy and Australia.

Adam Webb, campaign manager at FanFair Alliance, an anti-touting campaign group, says: “Good luck to Digital Fuel Capital. For their sake, I hope they didn’t pay very much.

“Viagogo is a website with a long and storied history of breaking the law and that’s dominated by large-scale touts and non-existent tickets.”

 


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