When it comes to concerts, live sports, and even theater events, SeatGeek has become the go-to mobile platform to buy and sell tickets. The company has only been around since 2009, but boasts box office clients like the National Football League’s Dallas Cowboys, the National Basketball Association’s Brooklyn Nets, and the English Premier League’s Liverpool Football Club.
Even if you haven’t used SeatGeek yet, you’re probably well acquainted with the product. The company is a sponsor of popular podcasts like Talking Baseball and the Chris Rose Rotation; and if you’re looking up the latest high-profile sports controversy, you’ve seen the company on commentator Jomboy’s infamous YouTube “breakdowns.”
“The way we reach consumers today is different to how we did it ten, even five years ago,” said Ian Borthwick, vice president of influencer marketing at SeatGeek in a statement about its nontraditional advertising path. “We took a leap of faith, standing behind new media brands and creators from the start—now, we’re well positioned to continue growing and evolving with today’s consumers.”
The partnership with Jomboy was formed after SeatGeek reached out to its community, asking fans who they thought its next partner should be. The success of the partnership has earned SeatGeek the reputation of being well ahead of the curve in identifying up-and-coming talent.
That vision has paid off: 2021 included a record fourth quarter with $82.5 million in revenue, up 45 percent from its Q3 reporting. But it didn’t stop there. This year will likely hit another record. Revenue was predicted to double by the end of 2022, and, unsurprisingly, everyone wants a piece.
In August 2022, SeatGeek announced it had raised $238 million in Series E financing, with evaluations of the private company at $1 billion. The bulk of the fundraising was undertaken by Accel with additional participation from Wellington Management, Arctos Sports Partners, and Ryan Smith, the founder and executive chairmen of Qualtrics and founder of Smith Entertainment Group.
SeatGeek’s success can partly be attributed to its desire to revolutionize the long-stagnant ticketing world. In 2021, the company announced SeatGeek Swaps, the first-ever ticket return feature to be offered by a major platform. Previously, those who weren’t able to use the tickets they purchased were limited to learning a lesson about time management or trying to resell the tickets, a potential extravaganza of shenanigans.
SeatGeek Swaps seeks to remedy the anxiety. The program allows customers to return tickets up to seventy-two hours before an event, and in exchange, they receive a twelve-month promo code credit for another event.
“Consumers expect flexibility in every purchase they make these days, but until now our industry didn’t have a way to offer that,” said SeatGeek Cofounder and CEO Jack Groetzinger in a prepared statement. “SeatGeek Swaps changes the equation and is another step in creating more ease and delight in ticketing for fans.”
New ideas come from those unburdened with the weight of “how it’s always been.” Talent like Senior Director of People Conor Molloy is bringing energy to traditional roles that can also benefit from evolution. Molloy is relatively young to be in his leadership role, but it makes sense that he’s at SeatGeek, where innovation is everything. Initially brought on as head of total rewards, Molloy was promoted to his current position in July 2022.
Prior to joining SeatGeek, Molloy accrued significant consulting experience across multiple firms and spent a year and a half at Freshly. The director has a master’s in human capital management from Columbia University, and if his rate of promotion is any indication, Molloy is well on his way to redefining his role at a company that is redefining the ticketing industry.
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