Citi card holders around the globe will soon be getting exclusive access to their favorite bands as the financial services company is moving to expand its popular Citi Private Pass program to Latin America and Asia.
News of the new initiative, which allows Citi cardmembers early access to special events similar to the domestic program, came Thursday night during a Citi Private Pass concert featuring Grammy nominees Imagine Dragons performing at the Wiltern Theater as part of Grammy week.
Latin America "is one of the big growth areas for us," said Jennifer Breithaupt, Citi's Senior VP of Entertainment Marketing and one of Billboard's 2014 Power 100 (No. 24). "We are expanding the program that we have in the U.S. and Latin America is a huge market for Citi. We do a lot down there in the region with music, but we don't bring the global tours there and [we'd] like to do something there like we do with the Private [Pass] shows."
Citi's presence in terms of pre-sales is already in place outside of the U.S., Breithaupt said, but the logical next step is providing backstage lounges and experiences to fans throughout Latin America, including Mexico, and Asia.
Breithaupt, who has been with Citi for 12 years (nine of those in entertainment access), says that Roc Nation and Live Nation are key as partners in addition to celebrities such as pop star Shakira who the executive calls "a friend of the [Citi] family." The Colombian singer/songwriter has been part of the company's Private Pass shows.
There are two development programs in the mix, she adds, which will likely include music rights and commercials.
"It's fun for us because our counterparts in Latin America are really looking at what we've been doing in the commercial and ad space," Breithaupt said. "We're saying we can do the same thing there and then combine it with tickets to concerts and experiences."
The new Citi Private Pass programs will likely launch in the fourth quarter, Breithaupt notes, but "you'll see something smaller in the second quarter."