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UK’s Old Trafford to use blockchain for cricket ticketing

Old Trafford Cricket Stadium

UK’s Lancashire County Cricket Club announced it would use blockchain to secure mobile tickets for all 2020 domestic and international fixtures at its home ground, Emirates Old Trafford. The Club is leveraging the TIXnGO platform after successful trials of blockchain ticketing during the 2019 season.

TIXnGO is a blockchain platform jointly developed by SecuTix, the official ticketing partner of Lancashire Cricket. TIXnGO was launched in April last year by ELCA, the parent company of SecuTix, reported The Ticketing Business.

“We’ve been working with SecuTix for nearly 18 months now and they are a developer who commit to the ticket buyer in a continual pursuit of delivering an amazing customer journey making ticket purchase a key part of the main event,” said Jonathon Nuttall, Lancashire’s Head of Ticketing and Digital Systems.

Blockchain ticketing has some clear benefits. An immutable ledger prevents ticket fraud. A grey market for ticketing is thriving, and with blockchain, Lancashire Cricket can efficiently monitor that tickets are sold to genuine buyers with verifiable identities.

Even with legitimate ticket re-sales, secondary markets operated by third parties benefit neither the fan nor the sports venue with profits earned by intermediaries. Last year, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) convened an international roundtable on the issue and future legislation is not impossible.

The TIXnGO platform offers an easy to use a mobile application to fans for securely storing, transferring, selling, reselling, or buying digital tickets. The app functions as a mobile wallet for digital tickets. Meanwhile, the event organizer gets a web-based console to track the tickets and their usage. The portal also gives insights and analysis on ticket sales.

Nuttal said that fans bought about 80% of the tickets for 2019 matches at the Emirates Old Trafford online, up from 50% in 2018. Lancashire Cricket partnered with SecuTix in 2018, with a focus on developing the mobile ticketing platform for the Club.

“TIXnGO creates a unique, encrypted ticket for smartphones that is completely traceable, removes the risk of counterfeit tickets and simplifies the process of transferring or reselling tickets for the customer. It easily plugs into Lancashire’s existing ticketing system to give fans a better and more secure digital mobile tickets experience,” said David Hornby, UK Managing Director of SecuTix.

Blockchain ticketing has been trialed by several others, especially in Europe. Last year, Ledger Insights reported on UEFA’s new ticketing app based on blockchain technology, which we believe was also Secutix. Two months ago, The Royal Dutch Football Association (KNVB) and Amsterdam’s JC Arena announced a blockchain solution to reduce black-market trading and ticket fraud.

Meanwhile, UK-listed TechFinancials invested in a blockchain startup with Footies Tech, the football (soccer) ticketing platform, to leverage blockchain for combating ticket fraud. Another collaboration is between the blockchain ticketing service True Tickets and Shubert Ticketing, to secure mobile tickets to Broadway shows.