Andrew Parsons, Ticketmaster UK’s managing director, has spoken out about the firm’s new exchange platform and its move to close its resale sites Seatwave and GetMeIn!

Late last year, Ticketmaster said it would close Get Me In! and Seatwave after claiming “secondary sites just don’t cut it anymore”. Both finally ceased trading in December.

In an interview with Music Week, Parsons said the service had sought knowledge from across the live events scene and designed a platform that could meet a market need but also attempt to control prices.

He said: “Fans are very clear that they need a means to sell tickets that they can’t use. Part of the issue that we’ve experienced as an industry for some while is that we don’t accept returns or cancellations and so as we’ve got more prescriptive in certain industries about not allowing customers to be able to resell, there was more of a need to have an actual exchange platform.

“That’s the direction we’ve gone in and the reaction we’ve had from the industry and from fans has been hugely supportive in that regard.

“They’re definitely embracing this as the way forward for resale. We’ve worked with many pioneers in this space who have sought to be limiting resale – Iron Maiden, Biffy Clyro, Ed Sheeran, Arctic Monkeys – and that work continues.

“We’d spoken with many of our industry partners over some time and they were very clear. The customers we engaged with on a daily basis were very clear – it was an, at best, inefficient process and it wasn’t a great experience.”

This week emails have been sent to customers ‘introducing’ the platform in which customers can buy or sell tickets at the original price or less, despite it going live with its new fan-to-fan exchange in December.

The mailer states: “We’ve launched a Fan-to-Fan Ticket Exchange on Ticketmaster where you can sell tickets you can no longer use. This means that you can buy tickets to a show as soon as they go on sale, and if your plans change you can easily sell them to another fan. You make your money back, and another fan gets to go!”

Image: Martin Fisch