WHAT: Name your own price for tickets including sporting events, concerts and Broadway shows. ScoreBig uses an opaque model. The inventory can come from the venue, a promoter or a reseller.
Users pick a seating tier, but they have to be flexible on the exact seats. Discounts range from 10% up to 60%. Best part: no service charges or delivery fees.
Priceline has taken no legal action against ScoreBig to date (Priceline famously has a business patent for reverse auctions that has been selectively pursued by their mercurial founder, Jay Walker).
LAUNCHERS: Adam Kanner (CEO) is a former NBA marketing exec and entrepreneur whose previous companies include Sports Loyalty Group, which provided marketing solutions for professional sports teams, and edu.com. Joel Milne (CTO & COO) founded Seasonticket.com.
WHY: Adam says the inspiration for ScoreBig came from his experience trying to get “butts in seats” for NBA games -- those butts drive all kinds of revenue streams like merchandise and concessions. Since excess inventory affects all kinds of industries, he figured there had to be a solution that wouldn’t damage the brands of teams and properties or cannibalize retail ticket sales.
WHEN/WHERE: Company launched in 2009. Beta launch in December 2010 / Hollywood. Not disclosing when product will fully launch -- could be “very soon or several months.”
BUSINESS MODEL: “We work in partnership with properties. Our deals are different in many cases, there are different components; revenue split is one of them,” says Adam. “We believe strongly in being paid based on what we produce and what we deliver.”
LAUNCH Translation: “We don’t want a 5% service fee like TicketMaster, we want 50% of the entire sale like Groupon.”
ON COMPETITION: “There are barriers not only in technology and platform, but the relationships built with our partners make it very difficult to do what we do. More importantly than that there’s dynamic pricing, which involves a huge amount of analytics.”
LAUNCH Translation: “Our business is not really that defensible unless it reaches scale.”
CUSTOMERS/GROWTH: Would not disclose.
PHILOSOPHY: “One of the things we learned from our other businesses is that there’s a big risk to turning people off with a product that doesn’t deliver,” says Adam. ScoreBig spent nearly 18 months testing to make sure product was good and partners were comfortable with it.
ON THE INDUSTRY: “The industry is very aware that we don’t want to leave consumers behind. A great amount of ticket sales are driven by avid fans, but not the majority of seats. We’ve got to figure out ways to make this experience more affordable...The next generation of fans need to experience the live event so they become the lifeblood of the industry’s consumers moving forward.”
WHO BACKED IT: Bain Capital (Jeff Glass), U.S. Venture Partners (Rick Lewis) and angels including Shari Redstone, Gideon Yu, Michael Bronner and Finn Wentworth.
TOTAL RAISED: About $24M in three rounds.
NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: About 70, mainly at Hollywood HQ with a few in their New York office.
After entering the name of the team, artist or event, ScoreBig shows you results, highlighting with color-coded tags which events have the best deals at that moment. You can opt to see only events with tickets or all events that meet your criteria.
Next, choose the number of tickets you want and the general area where you want to sit. Green checkmarks indicate which seating areas have available tickets in the quantity you requested.
At the bottom of the page, enter your offer. The tab on the right indicates what kind of offers have been accepted. If your offer is absurdly low, you’ll get a pop-up window asking if you still want to go ahead.
Enter your credit card info. Your card will be charged only if ScoreBig accepts your offer.
If your order is accepted, you’ll get a page indicating the percentage you saved and the option to share your deal with friends via Twitter and Facebook.
If you order is rejected, you’ll receive a counter-offer that’s valid for only 60 seconds. You can also opt to change the event or your seating preference and bid again.
CONTACTS & LINKS
Email: Adam at scorebig dot com
Email: Joel at scorebig dot com
Investors & board: http://www.scorebig.com/home/investors-and-advisors/