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Eventbrite confirms IPO plans

By | Published on Friday 24 August 2018


Eventbrite has confirmed its Initial Public Offering, with plans to raise $200 million by listing on the New York Stock Exchange. Details of the IPO plans were published yesterday, the self-service ticketing platform having initially filed confidential documents with the US Securities & Exchange Commission last month.

Among the stats included in yesterday’s statement is the fact the ticketing firm made a $15.6 million loss in the first half of the year, while losses in 2017 were $38.5 million. Earnings last year were $4.2 million. However, despite the losses, revenues are rising each year, with a 51% year-on-year rise between 2016 and 2017, and a 61% growth rate in the first half of this year. Elsewhere in the stats party, the firm says that last year 700,000 event organisers used its platform to sell tickets to about three million events in over 170 countries.

Eventbrite is one of the few ticketing start-ups to have made real traction in a market dominated by a small number of existing players, which use customer data, cash advances and other financial kickbacks to secure business from major event promoters, even when newcomers offer better tech.

Those tactics, coupled with Live Nation being both the biggest promoter and the biggest ticketing company in key markets, make it hard for start-ups to enter the ticketing business. Eventbrite gained momentum by initially pitching its services to more grassroots event organisers, and then grew its market share by acquiring other start-ups employing a similar approach, like Ticketfly and Ticketscript.

In its IPO filing, the company lists Live Nation’s various ticketing businesses – and especially those aimed at more grass-roots promoters like Ticketweb and Universe – as key competitors, alongside a range of other tech companies. It also references it partnerships with the likes of Facebook and Spotify, which are big pluses at the moment, but also create risk, because of the potential negative impact of those alliances ending.

Anyone wanting to learn more about how Eventbrite sells tickets could test out the platform by booking themselves a place on some upcoming CMU Insights training courses. In fact, that’s pretty much the only way I can think of for anyone wanting to know more about how Eventbrite works.