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SBD Global/January 21, 2013/Finance

EBay Looking To Stop Ticket Auctions On United Kingdom Website

EBay will stop selling tickets to concerts, gigs and sports events on its U.K. website as the company "attempts to revitalise the ailing U.K. arm of its ticket reselling business," according to Duncan Robinson of the FINANCIAL TIMES. Advertisements for StubHub -- the ticket reselling website that eBay bought in '07 for $310M in cash -- will start appearing on the U.K. auction site starting this week, "while all customers looking for concert tickets on eBay will be redirected to StubHub from the spring." The move will "provide some relief" for StubHub, which has had a difficult time gaining market share since it launched in the U.K. in early '12. Industry watchers estimate that StubHub’s U.K. arm sells "only a few thousand tickets a month." The estimate is "far less than its core U.S. business, which sells one ticket every second." StubHub "would not confirm these estimates." StubHub has struggled with "less benign conditions" for trading than in the U.S., with U.K.-based ticket resellers "coming under regular fire from musician groups, sporting bodies and some MPs," who will argue that it forces fans to pay higher prices to see their favourite acts or teams." Earlier this month, the English Cricket Board launched a "Touts Out" campaign aimed at reselling websites (FINANCIAL TIMES, 1/20).
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