Business News Legal Live Business

Ticketmaster employees named in Songkick lawsuit leave company

By | Published on Monday 9 October 2017


Two Ticketmaster employees named in Songkick’s anti-trust lawsuit against the ticketing firm’s owner Live Nation – Stephen Mead and Zeeshan Zaidi – have left the company, Billboard has confirmed.

As previously reported, Mead previously worked for CrowdSurge, which was acquired by Songkick in 2015. Mead left Crowdsurge in 2012, taking up a role at Ticketmaster’s Ticketweb a year later, before joining the main Ticketmaster company as Director Of Client Relations & Artist Services in 2015.

Songkick alleges that he nevertheless retained 85,000 Crowdsurge company documents on his laptop – including business plans, financial information, contracts and more – which he used to create reports for his new bosses about potential new business. It also claims he accessed CrowdSurge test sites created for potential new clients, which were publicly available to anyone who knew how the URLs were formulated.

The lawsuit claims that Ticketmaster then developed a plan to compete with CrowdSurge based on the confidential information it had obtained, including targeting new clients which the start-up was aiming to work with.

Both Mead and Zaidi were named in an updated version of the lawsuit, which Songkick originally filed against Live Nation in 2015. The main focus of the litigation is the allegation that the live entertainment firm – which is, of course, a significant player in tour and festival promotion, and venue and artist management, as well as tickets – was holding the acts it works with to ransom, especially in the US, if they decided to collaborate with the Songkick on fan club pre-sales.

Live Nation said that the extra allegations of hacking added in February this year were “baseless”, although Songkick submitted emails from Mead purported to discuss covertly accessing Crowdsurge’s system.

With the case set to go to trial next month, it emerges that Mead and Zaidi are no longer working for Ticketmaster. The exact circumstances behind their departures have not been disclosed.