Three months after announcing plans to buy Ticketfly from Pandora, the two companies combine to dominate music's middle market.
It's official -- Eventbrite's $200 million purchase of Ticketfly has closed and company officials are now working to unite the two companies that combined will sell 200 million tickets a year.
Eventbrite + Ticketfly have instantly become the most dominant player in ticketing's middle market of indie promoters, festivals and music venues. Eventbrite announced it was purchasing Ticketfly from Pandora in June, following a restructuring at the streaming giant and an investment from SiriusXM.
The Eventbrite purchase of Ticketfly officially closes today via wire transfer, and Eventbrite CEO Julia Hartz says now begins the process of figuring out how the two companies will work together, telling Billboard the long-term goal is to "create one experience" for customers and clients.
"When it was originally announced that we were coming together, there was a bit of a shock and sentiments like, 'Wow this is really happening,'" Hartz tells Billboard. "And we've really been spending a lot of time thinking and wrapping our arms around it. The benefit of the two most progressive ticketing companies coming together with a similar ethos of what we want to achieve for the music industry and for our customers is pretty powerful. Now the real work starts, integrating the platforms and creating one experience for customers, which is going to take a lot of heavy lifting."
Ticketfly CEO and founder Andrew Dreskin said the two companies will go from being competitors to collaborators. Combined the companies will do $4 billion in global ticket sales annually, selling 2 to 3 million tickets per week to consumers in 180 countries.
"Ticketfly and Eventbrite are the two best live event technology companies in the world," Dreskin said. Competition between the two was "increasingly becoming a two horse race and that is a time poorly spent. We've all congregated over the years and examined and discussed the merits of putting these businesses together. We're only five blocks away from each other. We have many friends at both companies and there's a lot of great reasons to come together."
How the two companies will unite is still being figured out. "We haven't rushed to that because we obviously needed to close the deal," Hartz tells Billboard, adding "we just want to be thoughtful about how we will create one experience."
Some layoffs and reduction of redundancies are expected -- a small number of Eventbrite ("less than 10," Hartz said), have been let go, but the larger vision is to combine the companies' product teams and engineers to continue developing the platform.
Ticketfly still plans to continue its partnership with Pandora to service its live events to listeners and enable promoters to sell tickets based on listener's music preference and location. Additionally, Eventbrite and Pandora plan to extend the benefit to Eventbrite’s music customers in the future.
The deal follows Eventbrite’s acquisition earlier this year of European ticketing company, Ticketscript, expanding the company’s global footprint in music. In the first half of 2017 alone, Eventbrite, Ticketfly and Ticketscript processed nearly 15 million tickets for more than 130,000 music concerts and festivals.