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Ticketmaster acquires blockchain tech company Upgraded

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Ticketmaster has announced the acquisition of blockchain technology company Upgraded.

Upgraded converts traditional tickets “into secure interactive digital assets protected by blockchain”, providing event creators with more control and visibility over ticket distribution. 

Its approach leverages blockchain technology combined with dynamic, encrypted barcodes to prevent fraud often associated with paper or pdf-based tickets. The solution can also be implemented without requiring a venue to replace existing access control hardware.

“Ticketmaster is constantly exploring emerging technologies, and there aren’t many that have the unique possibilities of blockchain,” said Justin Burleigh, chief product officer at Ticketmaster, North America. “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,” said Sandy Khaund, founder and CEO of Upgraded. “Upgraded leverages Blockchain to maximise 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.”

In August, Ticketmaster announced the closure of its UK resale sites in an effort to stamp out inflated prices online by touts. It also expanded its Verified Fan scheme to these shores last year. 

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