Blockchain is coming, whether anyone understands it or not, and the drumbeat drew a bit closer this morning when Ticketmaster, the world’s largest ticketing company and a division of Live Nation, the world’s largest live-entertainment business, announced that it has acquired Upgraded, a blockchain technology company servicing the live events industry. According to the announcement, Upgraded converts traditional tickets into secure interactive digital assets protected by blockchain, “providing event creators with more control and visibility over ticket distribution, and protecting fans against fraudulent tickets.”
“Upgraded’s unique approach leverages blockchain technology combined with dynamic, encrypted barcodes to prevent fraud often associated with paper or pdf-based tickets,” the announcement continues. “The solution can be implemented without requiring a venue to replace existing access control hardware.”
The technology will be integrated with the company’s other recent efforts to streamline and secure the ticketing process, including Presence, Verified Fan and the facial-recognition tool Blink Identity.
“Ticketmaster is the unquestioned leader in live event ticketing and is the perfect platform for us to bring the unique promise of blockchain to millions of fans,” said Sandy Khaund, Founder and CEO of Upgraded. “Upgraded leverages Blockchain to maximize trust for ticket holders, give control and flexibility to content owners, and data to teams and performers.”
“Ticketmaster is constantly exploring emerging technologies, and there aren’t many that have the unique possibilities of blockchain,” said Justin Burleigh, Chief Product Officer at Ticketmaster, North America. “We’re excited to have Upgraded join the team as we continue to focus on providing the world’s leading identity-based ticketing platform to fans, artists, and our clients.”