Supporting concert ticket sales with TicketSwap

The Dutch scale-up brings trust and fair pricing to the peer-to-peer ticketing industry.

When Hans Ober wanted to sell his ticket to the Dutch Lowlands Festival a decade ago, he realised there was no reliable and trustworthy place to do so. He wasn’t alone. Buyers and sellers of tickets were at the mercy of scams and unfair pricing practices. The idea for TicketSwap–a peer-to-peer ticketing marketplace–was born.

Trust as a competitive advantage

With its unique approach to security and customer protection, TicketSwap is helping nearly six million customers attend some of the world’s biggest concerts, festivals and sports events. Ticket scams are a big problem in the industry, something 12% of concert-goers say they have experienced. To prevent fraudsters from selling the same ticket multiple times, TicketSwap developed the SecureSwap system, which creates a new and unique ticket upon purchase.

Building the right technology to protect buyers and sellers is one thing, but ticketing marketplaces also need to earn their trust. Even a small detail out of place in the payments setup can convince users a site isn’t genuine. A checkout form that looks off-brand, a payment that doesn’t go through, or simply too many steps to complete a purchase–and the customer moves on.

Mark Jager, TicketSwap’s chief financial officer, said, “In Stripe, we found a partner who is equally focused on providing the best and most reliable software for its users. The two companies really think alike. TicketSwap is very much focused on technology. We work hard to provide a reliable, secure platform with a great user experience, and we expect nothing short of excellent technology from our partners.”

Backstage, good software matters

Every year, TicketSwap helps fans attend more than 6,000 events in 36 countries. Some of them–such as the Amsterdam Dance Event or King’s Day–draw thousands of users looking to buy and sell tickets at the same time, from all over the world.

Jager explained how important the purchasing experience is for concert-goers: “The purchase of tickets should be easy no matter where you live, as users may decide to buy tickets at a spur of the moment. Supporting local payment methods, such as iDEAL in the Netherlands or Bancontact in Belgium, is critical to provide a seamless experience. Our business is global, our events are global, and our users are global–so our payments need to be global too.”

When Stripe expanded into Hungary in 2020, TicketSwap moved its Hungarian business to Stripe as well. Hungary is now one of the company’s most successful markets with over 160,000 users. TicketSwap is an exclusive partner to Sziget Festival in Budapest.

Supporting global expansion

Whilst payments are locally idiosyncratic, TicketSwap has big global ambitions. Building on top of the Stripe APIs, the Dutch scale-up can expand quickly by focusing exclusively on its core business.

Jager shares, “We’ve recently added Stripe’s new Payment Element. It is a bit like a universal translator. We can add new payment methods with a single line of code, making our lives much easier. In 2021, going live in Brazil, Italy, Sweden, and Germany was a huge effort generally, but it was smooth and easy on the payments side. We are continuing our international expansion and will add more countries in the future. We are confident that Stripe will remain a key partner for us along the way, supporting our efforts to bring TicketSwap to concert lovers everywhere.”