Global ticket sales and distribution company Ticketmaster has acquired Upgraded, a blockchain startup specialized in anti-fraud systems for the ticketing industry. Upgraded uses distributed ledger technology and smart tickets to combat fraud within the ticketing industry. There has been no mention of the money involved in this deal.
“The solution can be implemented without requiring a venue to replace existing access control hardware”, Ticketmaster wrote in a released statement. The company will also integrate the newly acquired blockchain tech into other systems like Presence, Verified Fan and the facial-recognition tool Blink Identity.
The acquisition of Upgraded by Ticketmaster is quite timely. Live Nation Entertainment, the mother company of Ticketmaster, has come under fire. Main competitor AEG has accused the company of unethical practices, which caused an investigation of the Department of Justice. Secondly, there’s a class-action lawsuit against Ticketmaster and LNE as part of a settlement regarding overcharging fees.
Perhaps the acquisition of Upgraded can provide the necessary transparency that’s needed for the world to fully trust Ticketmaster and Live Nation Entertainment again.
Anyway, Ticketmaster is not the first ticketing company to embrace blockchain technology. Amsterdam based ticketing service GUTS has been using the blockchain to combat fraud for one year now. But they are working much more local compared with Ticketmaster, obviously.