Groupon and Live Nation (which owns Ticketmaster) have teamed up to form GrouponLive, which is exactly what you’d think it is from the first half of this sentence. The joint venture will offer exclusive deals on tickets to concerts, sports, theater, and other events.
The financial terms of the deal weren’t disclosed, but it’s easy to see what each side can gain from it; what applies for Groupon’s business model in retail holds true here. The features that have always make Groupon appealing–sharing, serendipity, and yes, to a lesser degree, saving money–will continue to drive sales, of which Groupon will presumably take a cut. GrouponLive will help “artists and others to reach ever larger audiences,” Michael Rapino of Live Nation said in a statement issued today.
The rise of GrouponLive is well-timed, of course, with the summer concert season on the way–and with last year’s concert grosses down 26.4% industry-wide (attendence was down 12.3%). But the sharing potential here–and the idea of tapping into music fans themselves to spread the word about concerts and begin the buzz about shows long before the curtains open, is something we recently discussed with Live Nation’s president of national partnerships and the Live Nation Network, Russell Wallach at our Innovation Uncensored event.
Today’s announcement ends in unusual fashion, with a sort of “special thanks” paragraph extending gratitude to Guy Oseary–Madonna-manager, Gwyneth Paltrow-dater, onetime rumored Simon Cowell-replacer, and general international man of semi-mystery. Oseary is an intriguing figure in music and entertainment, and Groupon says he’s on its advisory board. It will be interesting to see what moves Oseary continues to make in the realm where tech startups and entertainment meet.