UK’s CMA Says Viagogo’s StubHub Tie-Up Will Reduce Competition

UK’s competition watchdog stated that ticket reseller Viagogo’s US$4.05 billion completed deal for StubHub, the ticketing unit of US e-commerce company eBay, will reduce competition, reported Reuters.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) stated that its in-depth investigation provisionally found that the merger could lead to increases in fees for customers and could result in a lower quality of service and reduced innovation in the sector.

The merger could lead to increased fees for customers, including individuals, who resell or buy secondary tickets to live events, the CMA stated its investigation found.

It could also result in a lower quality of service and reduce competition and innovation in the sector, the CMA stated.

“Whilst we disagree with the provisional conclusion that the deal would reduce competition, we look forward to working with the CMA to deliver a comprehensive solution which addresses their concerns,” a Viagogo spokesperson said.

The CMA, which started its probe in April, stated it was mindful of the significant impact of the coronavirus crisis on the live events industry.

“However, the evidence is that Viagogo and StubHub would remain important competitors for the foreseeable future without the merger,” the CMA stated.

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