Posts tagged with "StubHub"

SeatGeek allows ticket holders to cancel for a credit at least 72 hours before a live event

October 5, 2021

The pandemic introduced a whole new level of uncertainty into planning a night out. But now, SeatGeek says it will offer a credit for any ticket returned at least 72 hours before the event, The Wall Street Journal reports.

The live-event ticketing platform SeatGeek—founded in 2007 and based in New York City—has begun giving buyers the option to return their ticketsfor any reason—and get a credit toward another event.

Its new feature, called SeatGeek Swaps, gives buyers who return their tickets at least 72 hours before any event a promotional credit equal to the purchase price and any fees paid.

SeatGeek told the Journal that it is offering the alternative just  as the pandemic has pushed all manner of purchases—not just tickets—online, and introduced new uncertainty into planning nights out.

“When you look at how people use their phones, and what they expect of the product, people expect more flexibility and expect things to be on-demand, expect to not be locked into something for the long term,” said Jack Groetzinger, a co-founder and the chief executive of SeatGeek.

The new feature could have trickle-down effects across the ticketing and reselling industry, analysts said. Currently, many ticket sellers and marketplaces offer refunds only under specific circumstances, like canceled events, and sell ticket insurance that covers certain changes in plans.

Online sales of event tickets in the United States, including sales and resales, is expected to increase 4.7% between now and 2026 to $7.9 billion, according to IBISWorld, a research firm.

The ticket sales industry is crowded, with powers like Ticketmaster, a subsidiary of Live Nation Entertainment, facing off against rivals like SeatGeek, StubHubEventbrite, and Gametime.

Sellers on the platform receive payment for their tickets even if buyers return them, the company said. SeatGeek will put the returned tickets back up for sale. Ticket brokers and fans, who comprise the vast majority of sellers on the platform, have been automatically added to the swaps program.

But the swaps program might not work smoothly for all venues. SeatGeek is consulting with those that sell season tickets, for instance, to see how the feature could work for them, according to the company. The considerations of venues also differ from those of individuals—for example, venues need to make sure ticket holders show up to buy things like drinks and snacks.

SeatGeek decided to issue credits for returns instead of cash back to avoid potential fraud issues, company executives said. Credits also keep consumers and their money within SeatGeek.

A service like SeatGeek Swaps offers consumers greater freedom in their choices that other platforms don’t have and which may end up encouraging buyers to use SeatGeek over others, said Paul Hardart, director of the Entertainment, Media and Technology program at New York University’s Stern School of Business.

“For the customer, it gives them some optionality that they didn’t have before,” Hardart said. “A lot of that is perceived value, but it is real. You have that choice to get out of it and that might encourage people. Especially during COVID, a lot of people are hesitant to commit to anything too far in advance.”

Research contact: @WSJ

Major League Baseball visits Iowa’s Field of Dreams

August  9, 2021

This coming week, life will imitate art when a bunch of big-league ballplayers walk through a cornfield to reach a regulation, manicured—if comparatively secluded—diamond where they plan to play a game of baseball, Bloomberg reports.

On August 12, the Chicago White Sox will be the “home” team, taking on the New York Yankees at the site of the 1989 movie, “Field of Dreams” in front of 8,000 fans in Dyersville, Iowa.

It’ll be the first regular season Major League Baseball game in the state, Bloomberg notes—but maybe not the last.

This is the kind of exposure public officials dream about when they’re bitten by the economic-development bug. But the municipal market hasn’t quite caught up. Not yet.

Dyersville, with a population of roughly 4,100, was incorporated in 1872. It sold $3.9 million in general-obligation bonds during the first week of August to pay for capital improvements and a new skid loader and fire truck. The unrated offering included tax-exempt bonds due in 2037 that priced 84 basis points above top-rated munis.

The only mention of the thing that draws thousands of tourists to the city each year is contained in a single sentence of the official statement to the bonds: “The City is home to the National Farm Toy Museum and the Field of Dreams Movie Site.”

Such modesty is likely to fade after MLB comes to town with a national broadcast, no doubt to be filled with excerpts from the movie and swelling musical accompaniment in addition to glimpses of the charms of Dyersville’s downtown.

 The site has shown remarkable durability for the setting of a 32-year old movie. There’s not exactly a lot to do there. Visitors basically follow the script as laid out in the movie by James Earl Jones’s character, writer Terence Mann: “People will come, Ray. They’ll come to Iowa for reasons they can’t even fathom.”

Right now, they come to soak up the atmosphere and maybe look to the surrounding cornfield in the hopes that Shoeless Joe Jackson and the other Black Sox will emerge, as they did in the film. And then maybe tour the farmhouse and buy a souvenir.

That’s it. And yet between 65,000 and 100,000 fans reportedly do this every year. That’s staying power, and a testament to the movie’s place in the culture.

A company called Go the Distance Baseball bought the parcel in 2011. A representative says it’s now waiting to acquire and confirm funding to start to build a complex of six fields for a youth sports center on the site. We have seen lots of municipal bond deals finance these projects. Sister company All-Star Ballpark Heaven now runs youth tournaments at city facilities.

The MLB game was originally scheduled for 2020, but the pandemic intervened, and the event was postponed to this week. The game isn’t being played on the actual field, but on a diamond constructed beside it, accessed by a pathway through the cornfield.

Mayor James Heavens of Dyersville has said the long-term goal is to make this a marketing opportunity for the town. But some fans apparently feel you can put a price on existential joy. On Friday, pairs of tickets—sold to Iowans by lottery for $375 apiece and also distributed to the two clubs— were being offered on StubHub, starting at $1,365 for each seat.

Research contact @business