It’s not been smooth sailing for secondary ticketing firm Viagogo’s $4bn takeover of rival StubHub since it was announced in November 2019, thanks to regulatory investigations and Covid-19.
Now Viagogo is proposing a solution that it hopes will fend off the regulators: selling StubHub’s business outside North America, while hanging on to the US and Canada subsidiaries.
The buyer would get StubHub’s database of buyers and sellers; its software; “a worldwide, irrevocable, royalty-free, exclusive license to all the intellectual property”; but (importantly, given the pandemic) would not be liable for cancelled events.
Viagogo hopes such a move would satisfy UK regulator the CMA, which has been breathing down its neck with an investigation for some time. The question is, even if the proposal is approved, who would be in the market for a secondary ticketing business of StubHub’s international scale, at this point in time?