Financial Times (06/04/15) Bradshaw, Tim; Cookson, Robert
Songkick and Crowdsurge are both online services that aim to bring musicians closer to their fans by helping them sell concert tickets directly, instead of through intermediaries such as Live Nation and Ticketmaster. London-based Songkick lists upcoming concerts for its approximately 10 million users, while Brooklyn-based Crowdsurge works with 500 artists to sell live music tickets to their fans. The two websites are merging as part of a $16 million deal with Len Blavatnik's Access Industries. Concerts typically only sell half of their tickets, but Songkick and Crowdsurge hope to remedy this problem by reaching out to a larger fan base and simplifying and modernizing the ticket purchasing process. With the advent of music streaming services such as Spotify, CD sales have plummeted and music artists rely heavily on live concerts for the majority of their incomes. Fortunately, live music is a growing market, with global live music revenues rising 10 percent between 2010 and 2014, according to PricewaterhouseCooper's Global Entertainment and Media Outlook report. However, Songkick and Crowdsurge will face fierce competition from Live Nation, which owns several of the world's largest concert venues and works with more than 280 of the world's most prominent artists.