A popular platform that sells tickets to various events, Ticketmaster just announced the acquisition of Upgraded, a blockchain-based ticketing platform.
With the new acquisition, Ticketmaster intends to increase tickets security. Moreover, it strives to combat fraud, which happens especially with paper-based tickets, or electronic tickets in PDF format.
What Is Upgraded?
Upgraded takes advantage of blockchain technology to convert traditional tickets into smart tickets. Smart tickets are more versatile than traditional tickets, and they’re more secure.
Upgraded stores data related to the price of the ticket and ownership on the blockchain. Given that once data is added to a blockchain it is unchangeable, it’s easier to verify who owns a ticket. However, a buyer can also purchase multiple tickets and then transfer them to friends.
In addition, Upgraded gives event creators more control over tickets. In other words, creators can easily check if the ticket is original and who purchased it.
Moreover, event creators can use the platform to prevent the resale of tickets. This is a great tool to prevent scalpers. In case the creators of the event want to allow resale, they can see where the tickets are sold. Also, creators can set a cap on the resale value or a limit on the tickets that can be resold. Resellers could also have to share a part of their profits with the creators of the event.
Why Ticketmaster Acquired Upgraded
Ticketmaster’s acquisition of Upgraded follows some bad publicity for the ticket retailer.
Earlier this year, several sources published exposés revealing that Ticketmaster was secretly helping scalpers. Ticketmaster and its parent company Live Nation Entertainment are currently fighting a class-action lawsuit related to these allegations.
Upgraded Goal Was to Work with Ticketmaster
Given Upgraded’s feature that allows ticket resales and tracks them, a merger between the two in light of recent headlines makes sense. In fact, Sandy Khaund, the founder of Upgraded, explained that it was their goal is to get Ticketmaster as Upgraded’s client.
In the same Forbes interview, Khaund also said that he didn’t aim to replace the existing platforms that sell tickets. Instead, he wanted to upgrade them with blockchain technology: “[My goal] is to be the Intel chip inside of ticketing.” He also added:
When you go to Ticketmaster, you get a drop-down that says PDF, postal service or will call. In the short term, I want to be the fourth option. In the long term, I want to be the only option. The other three options should not exist.
Through the acquisition, Ticketmaster is bringing blockchain to the ticketing industry. Similarly, Our Music Festival (OMF) is selling tickets using cryptocurrency.