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Eventim favourite to buy See Tickets

By | Published on Wednesday 31 August 2011

See Tickets

CTS Eventim is favourite to buy the UK See Tickets business, according to Music Week. A number of live entertainment companies are known to have expressed an interest in buying the UK’s second biggest primary ticket seller since current owners, Dutch investment firm Parcom Capital, recently let it be known it was interested in offloading the business.

See Tickets originally span out of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Really Useful company, and still sells tickets to West End shows as well as a plethora of music and sporting events, including the Glastonbury Festival.

With that in mind it’s possibly no surprise that the ticketing division of the Ambassador Theatre Group is also known to be interested in buying up See Tickets, as is AEG Live, which, of course, is keen to make its own mark in the ticketing domain since market leader Ticketmaster, whose services AEG have traditionally used, merged with its main competitor Live Nation.

CTS Eventim also had issues with the Ticketmaster/Live Nation deal, and indeed it was its objections that almost caused the merger to be blocked in the UK. The company had a partnership in place with Live Nation, which was launching its own ticketing business prior to the Ticketmaster merger, which would have seen Eventim basically operate Live Nation Tickets over here.

Eventim, which has much bigger operations elsewhere in Europe, saw its Live Nation partnership as a route into the UK market. Although the Live Master deal didn’t and couldn’t, in theory, prevent that partnership from going ahead, Eventim argued it clearly stopped its alliance with Live Nation from having any longevity, which made making an big investment into the UK market unviable.

Presumably acquiring See Tickets, which is likely to cost in excess of £100 million, would give Eventim the in over here that its Live Nation deal, in the end, failed to deliver. Eventim is possibly seen as favourite in the race to buy See because it bought the German division of the same company, and because it recently appointed a former See Tickets CEO, Nick Blackburn, as Chairman of its new UK operations.