Ticketmaster inks deal for new Latin America venture

Ticketmaster has pacted with CIE Intl., a South American venue management firm, to develop automated ticketing in Central and South America. Ticketmaster will manage and control the venture with a 51% majority interest.

The venture will initially focus on developing the Argentine and Brazilian markets, with the first operation expected to be launched later this year.

CIE, through its affiliate OCESA, currently manages key venues and promotes live entertainment in Mexico and Central and South America.

Under the terms of the agreement, Ticketmaster will also receive an additional 22.9% ownership stake in Venta de Boletos por Computadora S.A. de C.V., an affiliate company of CIE, when the new outfit is up and running. The additional 22.9% gives Ticketmaster a 49.9% interest in Venta, which is its Mexican licensee.

“This partnership presents a great opportunity for Ticketmaster to expand its ticketing operations in the fast-growing Latin American markets,” said Fred D. Rosen, prexy and CEO of Ticketmaster. “By combining our ticketing expertise and well-known brand name with CIE’s in-depth knowledge of local markets, we will be able to provide consumers in these new marketplaces with improved levels of quality and convenience in ticketing services.”

Alejandro Soberon, chairman and exec prexy of CIE, said the deal will allow CIE to capitalize on Ticketmaster’s “recognized trademark and its proven success and technology” while tapping CIE’s “understanding of the region and its proven success in providing high value entertainment-related services.”

Ticketmaster is the world’s leading computerized ticketing service, selling over 70 million tickets annually through over 2,900 retail ticket center outlets, 25 telephone call centers and its Internet site.

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