Ticketmaster Prepares to Vault Into China [Wall Street Journal]
Summary: Ticketmaster, a division of IAC/InterActiveCorp., has won exclusive rights via a joint venture with a Beijing municipal government affiliate and a local sporting events promoter, to supply tickets for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics. The Games will have a lasting effect, not only from the billions of dollars being poured into infrastructure and construction, but also on event marketing and the ticketing business, which are still in their infancy, and mostly local operations. Note too, that less than 5% of the Chinese population have credit cards. Thus, Ticketmaster sees a huge opportunity in China. Its president and chief operating officer commented, "We are committed to a long-term investment in China." Ticketmaster founder Albert Leffler explained, "The timing was such that we weren't ready to go into China until now, and China wasn't ready until now for our model." Ticketmaster's overseas revenue last year was more than 25% of its $950 million in sales. Ticketmaster has partnered with Bank of China to facilitate ticket payment and pick up.
Related links: Ticketmaster Enters the Ticket Auction Business • IAC's Ticketmaster Results Bullish for Hollywood Media • For more on Ticketmaster, read Ticketmaster parent company IAC/InterActiveCorp's most recent conference call transcript. Also, see Jim Cramer's take on IACI.
Potentially impacted stocks and ETFs: IAC/InterActiveCorp. (IACI), First Trust Dow Jones Internet Index ETF (FDN)
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