A correction was made to this article on Feb. 1, 2004.
HOLLYWOOD — Online movie-ticketing company Fandango has gained direct access to the Web’s biggest destination for filmgoers, signing a deal with Yahoo! to sell tickets directly to users of the Yahoo! Movies site.
Multiyear deal calls for Fandango ticketing to be integrated into Yahoo!’s movie showtimes.
Yahoo! already had a deal with MovieTickets.com. With the addition of Fandango, it will provide users access to approximately 90% of the nation’s theaters.
The other major online ticketing provider is Moviefone, owned by Yahoo! competitor American Online.
Deal will give Yahoo! a small commission on sales it refers to Fandango, which charges a $1 fee per ticket. But a Yahoo! Movies rep said the deal would be even more important in attracting studio advertisers.
“The upside on this is not the small commission we make on tickets as much as creating a better environment for film studios to advertise,” said Jim Moloshok, Yahoo!’s senior VP of media, entertainment, information and finance. “Once we interest somebody in seeing a movie, we can get them to immediately close the transaction.”
Yahoo! will begin linking to Fandango’s Web site from its own immediately and plans to integrate its partner’s ticketing services by the second quarter.
While Fandango and MovieTickets.com will be part of the Yahoo! Movies site through the fall, Moloshok hinted that at that point, when Yahoo!’s contract with MovieTickets ends, the portal likely would work exclusively with Fandango. That would give it coverage of nearly 70% of the nation’s theaters.