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Industry vet Matt Ephgrave joins Festicket

Ticketing industry veteran Matt Ephgrave has been appointed chief operating officer of Festicket, a UK-based seller of festival ticket packages.

Ephgrave, who has previously worked at Ticketscript (acquired by Eventbrite in January), Yplan (now owned by Time Out) and Ticketmaster’s Seatwave, will oversee all Festicket’s daily operations, including global customer service, fulfilment and account and campaign management, from its London HQ.

Festicket packages tickets with travel, accommodation and other add-ons to create “complete festival trips”, working with more than 1,000 partner music festivals in 40 countries. It was recently ranked as the UK’s 6th fastest-growing technology company by the Sunday Times Tech Track 100, and is on course for 100% revenue growth in 2017.

“Festicket undoubtedly has a very big future, and it was an easy choice to come and be a part of it”

The company last July closed an additional US$6.3 million in funding, bringing its total investment to date to $10m.

“Right now is an exciting time for Festicket, with Matt bringing huge experience to the team, a number of very important partnerships in the pipeline and another year of significant drawing to a close,” says Festicket founder and CEO Zack Sabban. “Ambitious planning for 2018 called for someone of Matt’s skills and know-how, so we’re delighted that he is joining us for the next stage in the Festicket journey.”

Ephgrave adds: “This is a fantastic opportunity to work with a strong team that’s more than used to success. Festicket undoubtedly has a very big future, and it was an easy choice to come and be a part of it.”

 


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Ingresso acquired by Accesso

Leading entertainment ticket distributor Ingresso, formed in 2011 by See Tickets founder Nick Blackburn and ex-Seatem Group CEO Paul Burns, has been acquired by Accesso, a developer of queueing and ticketing solutions for live events, theme parks, zoos and other attractions.

According to the directors of Berkshire-based Accesso (formerly Lo-Q), the acquisition will provide Ingresso with a “significantly larger global distribution channel through which existing Accesso customers can seek to see their event and attraction tickets”.

Ingresso merged with BCD Entertainment in November 2013, with BCD’s Bart van Schriek becoming CEO.

The company counts among its clients Cirque du Soleil, Time Out Group’s YPlan and Amazon Tickets – although, as IQ revealed last week, Amazon is believed to be moving over its ticket inventory from Ingresso to Outbox, the technology used by AEG’s AXS.

Tom Burnet, executive chairman of Accesso, comments: “Our guiding purpose at Accesso is to help our clients drive revenue and improve their guest experience. It has been that way from our very first day as a company, and today’s acquisition of Ingresso deepens that commitment further still.

“We will open up our customers’ venues to a significantly larger pool of potential visitors while also creating new opportunities for growth”

“The ticket and the experience surrounding its purchase are absolutely central to our customers’ operations and our potential for growth. For many of our customers, access to third-party distribution channels for ticket sales is an important revenue stream.

“In acquiring Ingresso, we will help connect venues with their visitors via third-party distribution outlets in a technologically and financially efficient service-minded manner. We will open up our customers’ venues to a significantly larger pool of potential visitors while also creating new opportunities for growth through combining our platforms, leveraging our scale and deepening our relationships in the industry.”

“Along with the entire Ingresso team, I am thrilled to be joining Accesso,” adds van Schriek (pictured). “The cultures and values of our two companies are very similar: both innovative, both passionate about the customers we serve and both absolutely convinced of the potential our technologies have to create a new wave of value at all levels of the entertainment industry.

“I look forward to working with our new colleagues as we roll up our sleeves and take on the significant opportunity ahead of us.”

 


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Time Out buys Yplan for £1.6m

Last-minute event discovery and ticket sales platform YPlan has been acquired by the Time Out Group in a £1.6m all-stock deal.

UK-based Leanworks – trading as YPlan – has raised more than £31 million since its founding in 2012 by Lithuanians Rytis Vitkauskas and Viktoras Jucikas, who say in a joint statement the company is an “excellent fit” for Time Out.

Yplan lost £6.2m in 2015, although Time Out notes that “subsequent reductions in its cost base have materially reduced losses in the current year” and so expects the acquisition have only a “mildly dilutive” effect on its turnover this year.

“[Buying Yplan] will enable us to offer our large audience more online booking opportunities while improving the user experience”

Time Out, which has been listed on the London Stock Exchange’s AIM market since June, operates in 108 cities worldwide and offers recommendations for food, attractions, art, culture, shopping and nightlife. Its CEO, Julio Bruno, says: “Developing ecommerce and monetising our audience is an important element of our ambitious growth strategy. We acquired YPlan because its advanced technology will significantly accelerate this strategy. It will enable us to offer our large audience more online booking opportunities while improving the user experience.

“We look forward to welcoming the highly skilled YPlan employees to the Time Out team. Together we will be stronger than ever to bring our customers the capabilities to make the most of the city and to make Time Out an even better place to discover, book and share.”

 


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