In 2014, Ticketmaster accepted a $ 400 million settlement in a consumer class action lawsuit that offered credit to 50 million ticket buyers who had to pay “order processing fees” that were secretly profit centers for the company.
Ticket markets, including Ticketmaster, StubHub, Seat Geek, and Live Nation, came under fire again in 2020 when buyers refund request as the live events have been postponed and / or canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
As demand for sporting events and live entertainment begins to increase in the second half of 2021 with health and safety measures in place and Covid-19 vaccinations on the rise, Sports Illustrated has partnered with Venmo to offer fans an alternative when purchasing tickets for the sport. events, concerts and theater performances: SI Tix.
The platform, launched today in line and via mobile (iOS and Android), offers a $ 10 plan for all users who pay through Venmo, as well as a 100% money back guaranteed on canceled events.
“At the end of the cash, this is when the bad news usually comes in,” said David Lane, CEO of SI Tix. “When you go to SI Tix, at the very top of the experience, we show you the exact cost and the exact charges when you pay with Venmo. If you buy tickets for $ 250, you will pay $ 10. If you buy $ 5,000 worth of tickets, you will pay $ 10.
“On any other site, you can pay up to 30%, so a $ 150 fee on that $ 500 purchase. It’s $ 10 with us. If you buy any amount, any amount of tickets, we’ll save you money every time.
Lane said that SI Tix is able to save buyers money on transaction fees because the cost of customer acquisition and marketing is minimal with SI having 30 million customers and Venmo adding 70 million. more for a potential reach of 100 million.
SI Tix already has over 20 million tickets – an estimated inventory of $ 2 billion – for over 100,000 events ranging from the Stanley Cup Playoffs to Bruno Mars and A choir line.
“What we know about our audience is that sports fans love music,” Lane said. “They go hand in hand. In fact, when you survey and talk to sports fans, the majority of sports fans will see two non-sports live events in a calendar year. If they’re already going, we look at that audience and say, “Sport is our core concern and we know you’re going to be interested in a concert tour or a theatrical performance, so it’s a natural addition for us. to present this to you. ‘”
If fans aren’t comfortable paying for their tickets through Venmo, whether through mobile or the new desktop app, SI Tix still offers the option of paying by credit card or PayPal, with transaction fees. very competitive ”by 15%, according to Lane.
Sports Illustrated, which published its first issue in August 1954, was purchased by Meredith’s Authentic Brands Group for $ 110 million in May 2019.
“Where sport was our focus, SI Tix is starting to bring this entirely alternative ecosystem of concerts and theater to be able to tell that fan if you want to go to one of these events, we are going to give you access, we have already a relationship with you and you know our brand is one of the most iconic in the world, “Lane said.” You will always compare yourself like any good consumer – you won’t just take our word for it – and we believe that we’ll have the opportunity to show you something that can get you in and get you the seats you want at the price you want to pay.