Ticketmaster UK is one of the leading ticket sales and distribution companies in the United Kingdom. It sells tickets for various events including concerts, sports matches, theater shows and more. Ticketmaster UK is a subsidiary of Ticketmaster International, which operates in over 30 countries worldwide. As a major player in the entertainment and live events industry in the UK, Ticketmaster UK is headed by an experienced managing director.
Brief History of Ticketmaster UK
Ticketmaster first established operations in the UK in the 1980s through a joint venture with MCA and Bass Leisure. This gave Ticketmaster access to venues like Wembley Arena and National Bowl. In 1991, Ticketmaster UK was officially launched as a wholly owned subsidiary of Ticketmaster International.
Over the years, Ticketmaster UK has grown rapidly by acquiring various regional ticketing companies across the country. Some of Ticketmaster’s key acquisitions in the UK include:
- See Tickets (2008) – One of the largest independent ticketing companies in the UK
- GetMeIn! (2009) – A leading secondary ticket marketplace
- Gigsandtours (2011) – An independent gig guide and ticket agency
In addition to its ticketing websites like ticketmaster.co.uk and getmein.com, Ticketmaster UK also has exclusive ticketing deals with major venues and events in the country. Some of its key clients include The O2 Arena, Wembley Stadium, The SSE Hydro, Premiership Rugby and the Edinburgh Festival.
Leadership of Ticketmaster UK
As a leading ticket sales company in the UK live entertainment industry, Ticketmaster UK requires astute leadership to steer its operations and growth strategy.
Managing Director of Ticketmaster UK
The current Managing Director of Ticketmaster UK is Andrew Parsons. He was appointed to this role in October 2018, taking over from Keith English who was the MD for 3 years.
As Managing Director, Andrew Parsons oversees all of Ticketmaster’s business operations and ticketing services in the UK. He is responsible for managing over 350 employees across Ticketmaster UK and developing strategic partnerships with venues and event organizers.
Some key responsibilities of the Ticketmaster UK MD include:
- Setting the overall business direction and growth strategy for Ticketmaster in the UK
- Driving acquisitions, partnerships and sales to expand Ticketmaster’s reach in the entertainment industry
- Leading marketing, product development and operations teams across different lines of business
- Representing Ticketmaster at industry conferences, forums and committees
Prior to joining Ticketmaster UK, Andrew Parsons was the Chief Commercial Officer at Sun Mark, one of the largest retailers in the UK. He has over 15 years of experience leading commercial growth for various retail businesses in the UK and Europe.
Ticketmaster UK Leadership Team
Supporting the Managing Director is an experienced leadership team consisting of directors managing different parts of the Ticketmaster UK business:
This leadership team brings together expertise across ticketing operations, sales, marketing, finance, communications and human resources. They support the Managing Director in executing Ticketmaster UK’s business goals and growth strategies across different areas.
Ticketmaster UK Business Operations
As one of the UK’s largest ticket companies, Ticketmaster has extensive business operations serving different parts of the live entertainment industry.
Primary Ticket Sales
Ticketmaster UK sells tickets directly to consumers through its primary ticketing websites like ticketmaster.co.uk and tickets.com. It has ticket sales partnerships with major venues and events across the UK. As the official ticket seller, Ticketmaster handles initial sales for concerts, festivals, sports matches and other events.
Over the years, Ticketmaster UK has invested heavily in its digital ticketing infrastructure and online sales capabilities to drive its primary ticket sales.
Secondary Ticket Marketplace
In addition to primary sales, Ticketmaster UK also operates a large secondary ticket resale marketplace through its GetMeIn website. This provides a safe platform for fans to resell spare tickets and for other consumers to buy tickets on the secondary market.
Ticketmaster’s secondary ticketing operations have been controversial, with critics arguing it encourages ticket scalping and higher prices. However, Ticketmaster maintains the resale market provides more options for consumers to access high-demand tickets.
Ticket Distribution Services
Ticketmaster UK has extensive distribution capabilities, providing box office management and ticketing services for venues and promoters. This includes box office software, on-site sales, access control systems and marketing services.
Over 200 major venues and organizations in the UK use Ticketmaster’s distribution services to manage and sell tickets directly to their customers.
Artist and Fan Services
Ticketmaster UK also provides specialized services that help music artists, promoters and brands build deeper connections with fans:
- Artist websites and fan clubs – Helps artists create official websites with ticket presales and fan club member access.
- VIP & experiential ticketing – Offers VIP ticket bundles with add-ons like premium seats, meet-and-greets, merch and more.
- Marketing services – Provides data-driven marketing to find and engage fans across multiple channels.
These services leverage Ticketmaster’s ticketing data and technology to help clients boost ticket sales and enhance fan loyalty.
Ticketing Industry Trends Impacting Ticketmaster UK
Like all ticket companies, Ticketmaster UK has to keep adapting its operations and sales strategy to capitalize on emerging trends in the live entertainment and ticketing industry.
The UK ticketing industry has been undergoing massive digitization. According to the Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers (STAR), over 75% of tickets in the UK are now purchased online.
Ticketmaster UK has been at the forefront of digital ticketing innovation by investing in mobile apps, paperless ticketing, enhanced security and other technologies to make ticket buying easier online. It has also expanded its digital marketing capabilities to help clients promote events online.
Live Music Resurgence
The UK has seen a resurgence in live music attendance and revenue over the past decade. Total UK concert and festival attendance surpassed 30 million for the first time in 2019, driven by major tours by artists like The Rolling Stones, Spice Girls and Elton John. Higher demand provides opportunities for ticketing companies to sell more tickets.
Secondary Ticketing Growth
The secondary ticket market has grown rapidly in the UK, facilitated by online resale platforms like GetMeIn and StubHub. STAR estimates the secondary market was worth 523 million pounds in 2019.
Despite controversies around scalping, secondary ticketing remains a major growth area that Ticketmaster aims to tap into through GetMeIn. However, tighter regulations on ticket resale are likely in future.
Ticketmaster UK faces increasing competition from new players harnessing technology to sell tickets in different ways:
- Dice – Mobile-focused ticketing app with no fees model.
- Gigantic – Fan-to-fan face value ticket resale platform.
- Twickets – Fan resale site only allowing below face value resales.
To maintain its market leading position, Ticketmaster needs to innovate and provide greater value to consumers and partners.
Partnerships Between Ticketmaster UK and Live Nation UK
While Ticketmaster UK handles ticketing services, Live Nation UK promotes the majority of large-scale live music events and concerts in Britain. Live Nation UK is a division of the global entertainment company Live Nation.
Ticketmaster UK and Live Nation UK have an exclusive partnership making Ticketmaster the official ticketer for Live Nation’s venues and events in the UK. This spans venues like Brixton Academy and festivals like Reading & Leeds.
Some key aspects of the partnership include:
- Multi-year exclusive deal first signed in 2008 and renewed multiple times
- Covers ticketing for over 10 Live Nation owned/operated venues
- Ticketmaster is official ticketer for 75+ Live Nation promoted festivals and live events annually
- Also includes details on revenue shares, data sharing and joint advertising
This mutually beneficial deal leverages Live Nation’s vast concert promotions portfolio to generate millions of ticket sales for Ticketmaster annually. Renewing the partnership is a priority for Ticketmaster UK’s leadership to maintain its strong foothold in UK concert ticketing.
Financial Performance of Ticketmaster UK
As a private company, Ticketmaster UK does not disclose its financial results separately. However, its parent company Ticketmaster International reported global revenue of over $10 billion in 2022.
Ticketing insiders estimate Ticketmaster UK generates between 300 – 400 million pounds in annual ticket sales. This likely translates to over 100 million pounds in annual revenue for the company.
Despite challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic which halted events, Ticketmaster UK revenues have continued to grow in recent years through:
- Increasing ticket prices and fees
- Expansion into higher margin secondary ticketing
- New ticket agency partnerships and acquisitions
Ticketmaster UK’s strong business fundamentals and leading position in UK ticketing indicate continued healthy financial performance in coming years.
Ticketmaster UK Financial Metrics
|Annual UK Ticket Sales
|300 – 400 million GBP
|100 – 150 million GBP
|25% – 30%
These estimates indicate Ticketmaster UK maintains very healthy profitability, underpinned by its domination of UK primary and secondary ticket sales.
In summary, Ticketmaster UK is led by Managing Director Andrew Parsons and maintains a leading position in the UK ticketing market. It generates significant revenue through both primary and secondary ticket sales across music, sports and entertainment events. While facing some criticism and new competitors, Ticketmaster UK is well positioned to remain the dominant player in UK event ticketing through continual innovation and leveraging partnerships like with Live Nation UK.