Russian mobile phone operator MTS has purchased the country’s two largest ticketing companies.

Ticketland was acquired for R3.25bn (€46m/$56m), while MTS purchased a 78.2-per-cent stake in Ponominalu in a deal valued at R495m.

The Ponominalu deal includes an option for MTS to acquire the remaining shares by the end of 2020.

MTS said that the move is in line with its digital transformation strategy as telecommunications companies worldwide seek to diversify away from traditional calls and messages business.

Together the companies have a combined 25 per cent share of the $400m event ticketing market, MTS said.

The acquisitions will expand MTS’s range of digital services to about 78.5 million mobile subscribers in Russia, while the analysis of mobile subscribers’ data will help to improve ticket sales, MTS said.

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