Ticketmaster UK fined for 2018 data breach
The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has fined Ticketmaster £1.25 million over a data breach that compromised the payment information of an estimated 9.4m customers in Europe, including 1.5m in the UK.
Concluding its investigation of a 2018 cyberattack which targeted Ticketmaster, TicketWeb and Get Me In! websites through a third-party customer support plug-in, the ICO found that Ticketmaster UK Ltd violated GDPR by failing to put in place “appropriate security measures” to protect its customers’ data.
ICO investigators found that, as a direct result of the Ticketmaster breach, 60,000 payment cards belonging to Barclays Bank customers had been subjected to known fraud. Another 6,000 cards were replaced by Monzo Bank after it suspected fraudulent use.
James Dipple-Johnstone, ICO deputy commissioner, says Ticketmaster failed to assess the risks of including the third-party product, a chatbot developed by Inbenta Technologies, on its payment page, as well implement appropriate security measures to negate those risks.
“Looking after their customers’ personal details safely should be at the top of organisations’ agenda”
The company also failed to identify the source of the fraudulent activity in a timely manner, having taken nine weeks from first being alerted to possible fraud (in February 2018) to finally monitoring the network traffic through its online payment page, according to the ICO.
“When customers handed over their personal details, they expected Ticketmaster to look after them,” says Dipple-Johnstone (pictured). “But they did not. Ticketmaster should have done more to reduce the risk of a cyberattack. Its failure to do so meant that millions of people in the UK and Europe were exposed to potential fraud.
“The £1.25 million fine we’ve issued today will send a message to other organisations that looking after their customers’ personal details safely should be at the top of their agenda.”
The Ibenta bot was removed from Ticketmaster’s websites in June 2018.
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Driift celebrates success with livestream concerts
UK-based virtual producer and promoter Driift is announcing a slate of ticketed livestream concerts after successful online events with Laura Marling, Lianne La Havas and Dermot Kennedy.
The company, founded by ATC Management’s Ric Salmon and Brian Message, trialled the pay-per-view livestream concerts with a performance from Laura Marling at the Union Chapel in London in June.
“Ticketed live streaming is currently a space that no one controls, and we believe there is a long-term and commercially viable business here. It’s incredibly exciting” says Salmon.
Capitalising on the success of Marling’s show, Driift has since produced livestream shows for Lianne La Havas at the Roundhouse and Dermot Kennedy at the Natural History Museum.
Kennedy’s livestream show, which took place last Thursday (30 June) and featured Normal People’s Paul Mescal, sold over 30,000 tickets worldwide and was broadcast live over four different time zones.
“It strikes me that this is just the beginning of an exciting opportunity for artists and their teams to create new art that many will choose to pay for,” says Message. “If we get this right, ticketed livestream productions, whether live shows or something not yet dreamt of, can comfortably sit alongside promotional videos, traditional live shows and other ways fans and artists relate.”
This is not a replacement for live, this is a coming of age for livestreaming
Now, with investment from shareholders Beggars Group, Driift is producing more high profile livestream shows including a one-off worldwide performance from Biffy Clyro on 15 August from an iconic Glasgow venue and a performance from Sleaford Mods at the 100 club on 12 September.
“We’ve felt for a long time that livestreaming has been undervalued,” says Ruth Barlow, director of live at Beggars Group.
“We’re excited about the creative and commercial opportunities for the business, the artists and their fans; who no longer have to be in a particular city at a particular time to experience unique live music events.
“This is not a replacement for live, this is a coming of age for livestreaming.”
Driift will oversee ticketing, production, licensing, rights management and digital marketing for the livestream concerts – allowing artists to rebuild live music into their release campaigns and overall strategies.
Having collaborated with live industry giants such as CAA, Dice, Universe/Ticketmaster, YouTube, Pulse Films and Jackshoot, Driift is expanding its offering outside of the UK, with a number of shows being set up in North America.
This article forms part of IQ’s Covid-19 resource centre – a knowledge hub of essential guidance and updating resources for uncertain times.
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Live Nation, AEG report UK gender pay gap stats
Several UK-based live music businesses have voluntarily reported their most recent gender pay gap (GPG) statistics.
Despite the government ruling early into the Covid-19 pandemic that companies do not have to meet the deadline this year, Live Nation UK, AEG Europe and Ticketmaster UK have shared their pay gap data for the 12 months from 5 April 2019.
From 2017, all companies in mainland Britain with more than 250 employees have been required to report their GPG – defined as the “difference in the average hourly wage of all men and women across a workforce” – for the previous year to the government equalities office.
However, with that requirement on hold amid the coronavirus pandemic, many of the companies which appeared on last year’s list, including SMG/ASM Global, Academy Music Group, NEC Group, DHP Family and PRS for Music, have not reported their statistics this year. Global, meanwhile, is no longer in the festival game, and its successor entities do not hire more than 250 people.
This article will be updated if any of the companies that are missing add their GPG reports at a later date. For now, though, here are pay gap statistics – as well as links to the full reports – for the four companies which voluntarily met the original deadline…
Live Nation (Live Nation (Music) UK Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 44.5% (-44.3%)
Pay gap (median): 25.7% (+11.7%)
Live Nation UK slashed its mean pay gap (the difference in average hourly wage across the entire company) to 44.5% in 2019–2020 – the lowest figure since GPG reporting began in the UK in 2017. However, its median GPG (the gap between the middle-paid man and middle-paid woman) grew slightly.
Women occupy 36% of the highest-paid jobs and 72% of the lowest-paid jobs, while median bonus pay is 41.2% lower for women.
Ticketmaster (Ticketmaster UK Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 25.9% (-41.1%)
Pay gap (median): 28.9% (+25.7%)
At Ticketmaster, it’s a similar picture to parent company Live Nation, with a drastic reduction in the mean GPG but a slight widening of the median gap. At 25.9%, the pay gap across the entire organisation is also the narrowest it’s ever been.
Women occupy 21% of the highest-paid and 43% of the lowest-paid jobs; on average, women’s bonus pay is 32% lower than men’s (on a median basis).
Pay gap (mean): 34.5% (-20.9%)
Pay gap (median): 39% (+6%)
In the most recent 12-month epriod, AEG Europe had a mean pay gap of 34.5% (down 20.9% on 2018’s 43.6%), meaning the UK’s big two live entertainment companies both reported their lowest average GPGs since reporting began.
At AEG UK, women occupy 34% of the best-paid jobs and 59% of the lowest-paid jobs, while women’s median bonuses are 15.6% lower.
PPL PRS (PPL PRS Limited)
Pay gap (mean): -9.6%
Pay gap (median): -16.8%
Performance rights organisation PPL PRS Ltd, a joint venture between PRS for Music and PPL, had a negative gender pay gap – or a GPG in favour of women – in 2019/20.
Women occupy 49.1% of the highest-paid jobs and 27.3% of the lowest-paid, while a bonus gap of 0% means men and women take home the same average bonus pay.
Eventim UK appoints John Gibson as MD
CTS Eventim has appointed John Gibson as managing director of its London-based British subsidiary, Eventim UK.
Gibson, who started his new role in January, joins Eventim UK from online marketplace Groupon UK, where he headed up the live ticketing business for Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
The new Eventim UK MD previously held senior positions at SeatGeek, Vivaticket, Ticketmaster UK and See Tickets.
“I am delighted to have John on board in his role of managing director,” comments Eventim UK chairman Nick Blackburn.
“Gibson brings a wealth of experience with him, including an in-depth knowledge of all aspects of our industry”
“He brings a wealth of experience with him; which includes an in-depth knowledge, and understanding, of all aspects of our industry.”
According to the International Ticketing Yearbook 2019, Eventim UK is one of a number of major international corporates operating in the UK ticketing industry, along with Ticketmaster, See Tickets, AXS and Eventbrite.
Read IQ’s special anniversary feature on CTS Eventim here.
TM UK records biggest weekend for digital tickets
The long weekend of 12–14 July was one of the biggest in recent memory for the Ticketmaster UK team, with more digital tickets processed at greenfield sites than at any time since the technology’s introduction.
A third of tickets at Trnsmt in Glasgow (Friday 12–Sunday 14 July) were mobile-only, and 100% of Ticketmaster tickets at Lovebox (12–13 July) and Citadel (14 July), held in Gunnersbury Park, London, were delivered to fans’ mobile phones.
Festivalgoers were reminded in advance to download tickets using the TM mobile app; for those that didn’t, wifi hotspots were set up in the queue so getting into the festival was as quick as possible.
A transfer function, meanwhile, enabled fans to pass tickets to the phones of other people in their party – every person needed their own individual downloaded ticket – meaning Ticketmaster and the festivals knew every person entering the site (rather than just the buyer), reducing ticket fraud while increasing in- and post-event marketing potential.
“Our team scanned more mobile tickets than ever before at events across the UK last weekend, with 100% of tickets at Lovebox and Citadel delivered to fan’s mobiles,” explains Andrew Parsons, managing director of Ticketmaster UK.
“It was a fantastic outcome for us and, most importantly, the fans”
“What we saw was the fast and frictionless entry of fans into the shows they love, along with a significant reduction in ticket fraud. A further benefit of mobile tickets is that we now know the individual attendees who walked through the festival gates, so we’ve increased our marketing potential even further.
“We’re in the business of happy fans, and it’s clear from a very successful weekend that mobile is the way forward.”
Rory Bett, CEO of Lovebox and Citadel promoter MAMA, adds: “This was our first foray into using mobile tickets at Lovebox and Citadel and we’re pleased to say it was huge success. It was one of the most effortless experiences we’ve had getting fans on site, and quick, too.
“Together with the Ticketmaster team it was a fantastic outcome for us and, most importantly, the fans. We’re now looking ahead to the rest of the festival season and beyond.”
Ticketmaster began rolling out SafeTix, its new anti-counterfeiting technology for digital tickets, in North America earlier this year.
Mixed picture as UK biz reveals 2018/19 gender pay gap
For the second year running, the UK live music business has revealed its gender pay gap (GPG) statistics, showing a mixed picture in which strides are being made towards gender equality, but where female employees are still vastly outnumbered by their male colleagues at an executive level.
All companies in mainland Britain with more than 250 employees were given until 5 April 2019 to report their gender pay gap – defined as the “difference in the average hourly wage of all men and women across a workforce” – for the previous 12 months to the government equalities office. Companies also published data on bonuses and the breakdown of employees’ genders by pay quartile. (Read last year’s results here.)
While it should be noted that GPG measures the difference between men’s and women’s average earnings across a whole business – rather than the pay received by male and female employees for doing the same job – all companies surveyed by IQ reiterated their goal of narrowing the gap ahead of next year’s survey and beyond.
See below for how nine of the UK’s largest live music businesses stacked up in 2018/19.
“We are committed to narrowing the gap over time in our business”
Live Nation (Live Nation (Music) UK Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 80% (+18%)
Pay gap (median): 23% (-8%)
Live Nation UK’s mean GPG is the widest of the nine companies featured, growing 18%, to 80% (though its median gap narrowed), in 2018 – a reflection, says president Denis Desmond, of the under-representation of women in the wider music industry, especially in the upper echelons.
Writing in LN’s 2018 gender pay gap report, Desmond says the company is “committed to increasing women and diversity in our workforce and being an inclusive environment where everyone can succeed”.
“Women are under-represented in the music business. The gender pay gap is reflective of this, particularly with more men in the revenue-generating roles at the higher end of the salary scale,” he comments.
“This is something we want to see change. Real change requires a dual and sustainable approach; increasing awareness of the career opportunities available and ensuring we do all we can to develop and retain the women already making the industry such an important contributor to the wider UK economy.
“We are committed to bringing more women into our workforce through promoting all types of career options, and particularly helping influence young people to consider our industry. Alongside this we are creating more apprenticeships and internships designed to give people real skills needed to enter this business for a long-term and fulfilling career.”
Desmond reveals Live Nation recently conducted a “job levelling review across the UK” as part of an overhaul of its approach to reward and compensation decisions, in a bid to boost fairness. “Our robust policies and training programmes ensure that we are continually working to ensure no bias exists in our recruitment processes and ensuring we provide full support to all employees in balancing their family lives with the unique demands of the music business,” he continues.
“We see gender pay gap reporting as an opportunity to increase awareness of these challenges and are committed to narrowing the gap over time in our business.”
“Progress is being made, with 75% of all appointments at head of department level and above awarded to female candidates”
AEG/The O2 (Anschutz Sports Holdings Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 43.6% (+0.3%)
Pay gap (median): 36.8% (-4.4%)
AEG declined to comment on its 2018 gender pay gap, though it made its report available on Monday 8 April.
While its mean GPG widened slightly, its median gap fell by 4.4%, and there are a slightly more women in two pay quartiles – the top (28%, +2%) and lower quartiles (66%, +1%) – compared to 2017. The percentage of women who received bonus pay was flat at 22%, compared to 7% more men (39%).
“Despite having a fairly even split of male to female employees overall, our gender pay gap is significant and we have more work to do to remove this,” writes AEG Europe president Alex Hill. “This gap is created by a higher proportion of women than men in our lower-paid roles and more men than women in our higher-paid roles.
“Our gender pay gap is not acceptable and we must make even greater effort to work towards gender pay neutrality across our business.”
However, he adds, “[p]rogress is being made, highlighted by our figures showing that 75% of all appointments at head of department level and above were awarded to female candidates, and since April 2018, seven of the top 20 roles are now occupied by female employees.”
“SMG Europe is confident that its gender pay gap does not stem from paying men and women differently for the same or equivalent work”
SMG Europe (SMG Europe Holdings Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 16.6% (+4.6%)
Pay gap (median): 6% (+2%)
Arena operator SMG Europe’s pay gap slightly widened in 2018, although the proportion of female employees actually increased in every pay quartile. Its results, an SMG spokesperson tells IQ, are skewed by the nearly 20% more women in the lower quartile compared to 2017/18.
“We have undertaken significant resourcing activity in the past 12 months [6 April 2017–5 April 2018]. with 650 new colleagues joining our team,” they say. “The majority of new colleagues are casually engaged team members, of which 66.5% are female and 33.5% male. The recruitment gender ratios were consistent with gender ratio of applicants – ie no positive or other discrimination.
“As of April 2018, a total of 82% of our population comprised casual roles, compared to 77.7% the previous year. All our casually engaged colleagues, who make up the majority of our workforce, are paid at the same hourly rate for the same role, regardless of gender. The shift in our gender pay gap year-on-year is explained by the higher proportion of casually engaged individuals, of which there are proportionately more females this year, which is explained, as noted above, by the higher percentage of female applicants than our existing complement across our casually employed team.
“Our 2018 report also illustrates that women occupy 47% of the highest paid roles, compared to 43.3% the previous year, demonstrating that we have improved the proportion of women occupying the highest paid roles within the organisation.
“SMG Europe is confident that its gender pay gap does not stem from paying men and women differently for the same or equivalent work. Rather its gender pay gap is the result of the roles in which men and women work within the organisation and the salaries that these roles attract.”
“Whilst we are happy that this is going in the right direction, reducing the GPG remains a key priority for Global”
Global (Global Radio Services Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 32.7% (-2.7%)
Pay gap (median): 19.4% (-1.1%)
Global, the UK’s second-largest festival operator, says it remains “committed” to closing its gender pay gap, which narrowed by 2.7% on a mean basis in 2018.
“Our workforce is balanced and fluctuates each month somewhere between 45%/55% female and male employees; however, we recognise that not having enough women in senior leadership roles is a significant factor in driving our GPG,” reads the company’s 2018 gender pay gap report. “In 2018, we are pleased that we have made some improvement across all measures, and reduced the GPG to 32.7%. Whilst we are happy that this is going in the right direction, it remains a key priority for Global, and creating a diverse and fair culture continues to be incredibly important.
“However, we recognise that this is a long-term strategy that takes time and focus, and that we won’t look different overnight. We have identified a number of initiatives existing and new, that will help us to continue to improve.”
These initiatives include its Global Apprenticeship scheme, launched in September 2018, which welcomed 17 apprentices and graduates into programming, digital, video, marketing, technology and commercial roles – of which 53% were female and from a BAME (black, Asian or minority ethnic) background – and a six-month leadership programme, whose alumni include 20 female middle managers who will be supported “in growing their careers at Global”.
“Our gender pay gap reflects the broader societal challenges of getting more women into the technology sector”
Ticketmaster (Ticketmaster UK Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 44% (+8%)
Pay gap (median): 23% (+0%)
Ticketmaster’s mean GPG widened to 44%, while its median difference remains at 23%, the same gap as in 2017/18.
According to Mark Yovich, president of Ticketmaster International, its pay gap reflects the dearth of women working in the technology sector – and, if the figure was adjusted to remove employees working on the tech side, the GPG is 4% in favour of female staff.
“Ticketmaster is a vibrant, diverse place to work. We believe that diversity adds value to our workforce and delivers a better service to our fans,” he writes in TM’s 2018 pay gap report.
“As a technology-led business, our gender pay gap reflects the broader societal challenges of getting more women into the technology sector. There is an acute skills shortage in this area, with women accounting for just 25% of all UK STEM [science, technology, engineering and mathematics] graduates. Only 16% of leadership positions in the technology industry are held by women [source: NCWIT]. Illustrating this challenge, if you remove our technology employees, our mean gender pay gap is minus 4%.
“Of course, we want to see more women in the technology industry and have been working with several organisations who provide opportunities for women to get into tech, including Women Who Code, codebar, Code First: Girls, and have an official partnership with Code Your Future. We host and support these groups with funding and regular meet-ups in our offices. We launched our own female employee resource group, WE Nation, in 2015 which continues to roll strong through our business in both the UK and across our international markets.
To ensure fairness, we have systemised our approach to reward and compensation decisions, including conducting a job levelling review across the UK. Our robust policies and training programmes ensure that we are continually working to ensure no bias exists in our recruitment processes.
“We see gender pay gap reporting as an opportunity to drive awareness about the challenges in our industry. We will continue to support women at all levels in our business. We are committed to increasing women and diversity in our workforce and being an inclusive environment where everyone can succeed.”
“Women are under-represented in the live music industry, and the GPG reflects this”
Academy Music Group (Academy Music Group Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 21% (-3%)
Pay gap (median): 6% (+5%)
Live Nation-owned venue operator Academy Music Group (AMG) narrowed its mean pay gap to 21% in 2018, though its median GPG widened 5%.
Denis Desmond says AMG, whose venues include O2 Brixton Academy and Shepherds Bush Empire, is focusing on elevating more women into management positions.
“A key area of focus for us is achieving greater representation of women into venue management roles, which are our most senior positions and therefore attract higher rates of pay and bonuses,” he writes. “For venues, the median figure reflects our pay equity in the large volume of roles we regularly hire for where we have greater gender balance.”
“We are training managers to ensure no bias exists in our selection processes and ensuring we provide full support to all employees in balancing their family lives with the unique demands of the music business,” he continues, adding that, like Live Nation, AMG is “committed to narrowing the gap over time in our own business.”
“We are optimistic that plans to … attract, recognise and develop talent will have a real effect on improving gender pay equality at NEC Group”
NEC Group (National Exhibition Centre Ltd (The))
Pay gap (mean): 11.4% (+1.3%)
Pay gap (median): 9.7% (+2.6%)
NEC Group, which operates five arenas and convention centres in Birmingham, as of April 2018 had 1,861 employees and casual workers, of which 838 were men and 1,023 women. Its median pay gap, which widened 2.6% in 2018, nevertheless bests the UK average of 17.9%, says chief operating officer John Hornby.
Its most recent figures reflect the smaller proportion of men in lower pay quartiles compared to 2017.
“Overall the group’s profile is characterised by high numbers of employees working full and part time in the company’s catering, retail and hospitality operations, and smaller numbers of specialist technical, catering, supervisory and managerial roles,” reads the company’s 2018 GPG report. “The gender pay gap for the group presents a balanced picture, but there is still more to be done to ensure consistent improvement.
“In the past year, further investment has gone into developing our learning and development offer for all staff; for example, the New Leader programme and Experienced Leader programme, targeting those in leadership roles and those for whom a leadership role is the next career step. Since 2014 the team has trained over 260 new managers, with roughly an even male and female candidate profile.”
Hornby also highlights NEC Group’s talent programme, whose fifth cohort of 19 promotions is roughly gender equal, and its apprenticeship scheme.
“We are optimistic that some of these long-term plans to both attract, recognise and develop talent will have a real effect on improving gender pay equality within the NEC Group,” he concludes.
“Even though we’re ahead of most of our music industry peers … we’re not complacent about it – we know we’ve got more to do”
DHP Family (DHP Family Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 11.6% (-2.1%)
Pay gap (median): 5% (+1.5%)
Nottingham-based promoter and venue operator DHP Family reported a 2% fall on its already low mean gap compared to last year’s figures, and the company says it does “not have an issue with equal pay. Our gender pay gap derives from fewer female employees within our venue management teams. This is a trend within our industry, whereby there are many more male venue managers across all levels, in particular the more senior the positions.”
While its mean pay gap is well below the national average, its bonus gap (the difference in bonus pay between men and women) remains high, at 48.5%, despite the percentage of women eligible doubling in 2018/19. “We are continuing to work on female representation for bonus eligible roles, and our initiatives to attract and retain females within our venue management and senior management teams are slowly reducing this difference,” according to its 2018 report.
“We’re fully committed to reducing our gender pay gap and I’m pleased to see we’ve made further progress this year,” DHP Family owner George Akins tells IQ.
“Even though we’re ahead of most of our music industry peers and the UK national average, we’re not complacent about it; we know we’ve got more to do and we’ve introduced a number of initiatives that will help in the years ahead.”
“We are making positive steps, but we know there is more we can do”
PRS for Music (PRS for Music Ltd)
Pay gap (mean): 16.8% (-0.4%)
Pay gap (median): 9.7% (-1.8%)
Pamela Harding, human resources director at performance rights organisation PRS, welcomes its narrowing pay gap but says there is still more to be done.
She comments: “Although we have seen a slight improvement, we have a continuing gender pay gap as there are fewer women in senior positions than men at PRS for Music. We believe that real progress is achieved through influencing business culture, and in 2018 we commenced our programme to recognise drivers of unconscious bias to better support our efforts to promote diversity and act inclusively. We also continued to take positive action with our new ‘Dignity at Work’ policy and by working with industry experts in diversity and inclusion.
“We are making positive steps, but we know there is more we can do. As we look further ahead, we remain committed to engaging all levels of our business to encourage, support and exemplify our core values and celebrate our differences.”
Ticketmaster Int’l partners with Cancer Research
To mark World Cancer Day (4 February), Ticketmaster UK today announced a new fundraising partnership with Cancer Research UK, which will see 20 Ticketmaster International operations across Europe, Australia and New Zealand paired with a local cancer charity.
Ticketmaster will offer fans the opportunity to add a charitable donation on tickets bought through its websites, as well as dedicate all its employee fundraising activities – “from bake sales and bucket collections through to fun runs and quiz nights” – to support cancer charities around the world.
Mark Yovich, president of Ticketmaster International, says: “I am very proud to announce our partnership with Cancer Research UK. Cancer is something that is likely to have touched us all at some stage, our family, friends and even colleagues. By uniting our markets together from across the globe, we can amplify our efforts on an international scale and make a greater contribution to the fight against cancer. Our teams have great affinity with this cause, and I have high hopes for what we can raise together for Cancer Research UK this year, and beyond.”
“Around the world, Ticketmaster employees will be raising money to support their local cancer charities,” adds Caro Evans, director of Partnerships at Cancer Research UK. “Cancer Research UK is the UK partner and the money raised here will help fund our lifesaving research.
“By uniting our markets together from across the globe, we can amplify our efforts on an international scale”
“Today, on World Cancer Day, it’s exciting to be part of this international fundraising effort. Cancer is a global issue, so it’s vital that we work together to beat this disease.”
As part of its World Cancer Day activities, every Ticketmaster International employee has today received a Cancer Research UK ‘unity band’ to mark the day, while in London, Ticketmaster UK staff have taken to the streets with collection buckets, as well as volunteering in local Cancer Research UK shops. and taking part in a variety of cancer education and awareness programmes.
Last November, Ticketmaster UK held a white-collar boxing event in aid of Cancer Research UK at the Troxy in east London. A team of employees underwent eight weeks of boxing training in the lead up to the fight, which raised £48,983 for the charity – in addition to upsells on the UK site, which have raised a total of £350,000.
Ticketmaster International markets included in the Cancer Research UK partnership are Australia, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, the Republic of Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United Kingdom.
Ticketmaster ticket exchange goes live as Get Me In! closes
Ticketmaster has completed the process of closing its Seatwave and Get Me In! resale sites and launching its new price-capped ticket exchange.
In a decision welcomed by the broader industry, the company announced in August it was to shutter its dual European secondary ticketing platforms in favour of a price-capped system integrated into the main Ticketmaster site.
“When fans next log into [their account], they’ll see some brand-new features,” explains the company in a blog post announcing the launch. “First up, fans now have the option to sell tickets directly on Ticketmaster with the click of a button.
“Fans now have the option to sell tickets directly on Ticketmaster with the click of a button”
“Fans simply hit ‘sell’ on the tickets they can no longer use, and they’ll be put in front of millions of others to buy and go to the show in their place. When tickets are resold, we’ll cancel them and send new, unique ones to the fan who has bought them. That ensures that all tickets on Ticketmaster are 100% verified and fans will have no concerns about getting in at the door.”
The new ticket exchange joins similar solutions by several Ticketmaster rivals, including See Tickets’ Fan-to-Fan, CTS Eventim’s FanSALE and AXS’s Marketplace in Europe, and the soon-to-launch Ticketek Marketplace in Australia.
“Everything we do is about making the fan experience better,” continues the TM statement. “These changes have been designed and built to make it easier for fans to get into the shows they love.”
BTS win Ticketmaster’s ticket of the year 2018
World-conquering Korean boy band BTS has been crowned ticket of the year 2018 by Ticketmaster, which polled fans globally from its database of 200m people to discover the most popular live events of 2018.
The K-pop phenomenon recently became the first Korean act to surpass a billion streams on Apple Music, while their Burn the Stage movie sold more than 1.4m tickets, toppling a record previously held by One Direction.
Ed Sheeran’s mammoth ÷ tour was second, with long-running Dutch festival Pinkpop taking third.
In the UK, Scottish comedian Kevin Bridges becomes the first comedian to take ticket of the year, for last month’s shows at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, with Pink’s Beautiful Trauma and the Spice Girls’ Spice World named the most anticipated UK tours of 2019.
Hamilton, meanwhile, is Britain’s favourite theatre show.
“It’s been a while since the result of a vote has made me happy”
Bridges comments: “Thank you to everybody who came out to see me live this year, and a very special thank you to those who went as far as voting for me as their favourite show of the year.
“It’s been a while since the result of a vote has made me happy. You have restored my faith in democracy. Thank you all and see you another time.”
“What an honour from my beautiful UK fans,” says Pink. “A huge thank you to everyone that voted for the Beautiful Trauma tour as the Ticketmaster most anticipated event 2019. It’s been nearly five years since I’ve toured the UK – I can’t wait to get back and party with all of you.”
The winners in full are:
UK ticket of the year 2018
1. Kevin Bridges – The SSE Hydro
2. Hamilton – Victoria Palace Theatre
3. Ed Sheeran – Wembley Stadium
4. Taylor Swift – Wembley Stadium
5. Ed Sheeran – Hampden Park National Stadium
UK most anticipated events 2019
2. Spice Girls
4. Fleetwood Mac
5. Take That
Global ticket of the year 2018
2. Ed Sheeran
Spice Girls add five extra dates after “off-the-chart” demand
Saturday’s Spice Girls stadium tour onsale was a record-breaker for Ticketmaster UK, with enough fans trying to get tickets that the band “could have played nearly every night for a year”, according to MD Andrew Parsons.
The Spice World 2019 UK tour, promoted by SJM Concerts, Live Nation and Solo, will see the ’90s icons play stadia across Britain next summer. Five extra dates were added to the initial six due to incredible demand for tickets, which went on sale on Saturday morning (10 November).
“Demand for Spice Girls was off the chart,” comments Parsons. “They have smashed through Ticketmaster UK’s records, becoming the busiest-ever sale. There were millions of people on our site searching for tickets, with a queue at one point of well over 700,000. Hundreds of thousands of tickets were sold to happy fans across the country within minutes.
“Congratulations to the girls. From what we saw, they could have played nearly every night for a year.”
In addition to the extra shows, the band has announced a new line of branded T-shirts to raise funds for Comic Relief’s Power Up campaign, which supports charities that promote equality for women and girls.
“They could have played nearly every night for a year”
The T-shirts, emblazoned with the slogan ‘#IWannabeASpiceGirl’, are available to purchase until 1 December from Represent.com.
Liz Warner, chief executive of Comic Relief, says: “Girl Power is a shared passion. Right now, this movement for equality is uniting the world in the most spectacular way, and this very generous gift is going to help us support even more organisations fighting for the rights of women and girls here in the UK.
“We are proud to be the ones to take this forward with the Spice Girls and look forward to seeing the difference we can make together.”
Full tour dates, with the new shows highlighted in bold, are below:
Wednesday 29th May – Manchester – Etihad Stadium
Friday 31st May – Manchester – Etihad Stadium
Saturday 1st June – Manchester – Etihad Stadium
Monday 3rd June – Coventry – Ricoh Arena
Tuesday 4th June – Coventry – Ricoh Arena
Thursday 6th June – Sunderland – Stadium Of Light
Saturday 8th June – Edinburgh – BT Murrayfield Stadium
Monday 10th June – Bristol – Ashton Gate Stadium
Thursday 13th June – London – Wembley Stadium
Friday 14th June – London – Wembley Stadium
Saturday 15th June – London – Wembley Stadium