Ticketmaster acquires UPGRADED, a blockchain ticketing startup

Folake Dosu
October 19, 2018
Updated: April 29, 2019
Folake Dosu
October 19, 2018
Updated: April 29, 2019

ticketmaster-upgraded-blockchain

Buying event resale tickets can often require a leap of faith as the heavy presence of fraudulent tickets in the marketplace remains a concern for vigilant fans who wish to get their money's worth and avoid the crushing disappointment of being turned away from a venue. This need for accountability and security makes the application of blockchain a compelling proposition for resale ticket buyers. Global ticketing leader Ticketmaster seems to agree, as Billboard reports the company has announced its acquisition of blockchain ticketing startup UPGRADED.

With UPGRADED, fans can purchase blockchain-powered encrypted tickets (Interactive Smart Tickets) as a more secure alternative to paper or PDF-based tickets and creators can exercise more control over distribution. For event owners, UPGRADED collects data on who has claimed ownership over the life of the ticket and who ultimately was the fan who attended the event, providing valuable opportunities to reach that fan.

"Ticketmaster is constantly exploring emerging technologies, and there aren’t many that have the unique possibilities of blockchain."

“Ticketmaster is constantly exploring emerging technologies, and there aren’t many that have the unique possibilities of blockchain,” explained Justin Burleigh, chief product officer at Ticketmaster, North America in a press release. “We’re excited to have UPGRADED join the team as we continue to focus on providing the world’s leading identity-based ticketing platform to fans, artists, and our clients. We think blockchain and UPGRADED will continue our progress to improve ticketing and create a safer and more seamless experience.”

“Ticketmaster is the unquestioned leader in live event ticketing and is the perfect platform for us to bring the unique promise of blockchain to millions of fans,” added Sandy Khaund, founder and CEO of UPGRADED. “UPGRADED leverages Blockchain to maximize trust for ticket holders, give control and flexibility to content owners, and data to teams and performers. We’re proud of what we’ve built and are looking forward to working with the incredible team at Ticketmaster to help us scale.”

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