Last Second Tickets, the UK site that helps live event organisers shift unsold tickets, last minute, while passing on discounts to consumers in return for soaking up that surplus inventory, has scored a second round of funding: £1 million from Markco Media, the parent company of MyVoucherCodes, founded by serial entrepreneur, Mark Pearson. This brings Last Second Tickets’ total funding to £1.45m, having previously raised £450,000 from Markco Media, Charlotte Street Capital, and others.
The company says it plans to use the new capital to build its technology team to “help scale the business by automating many of the processes”, as well as boost marketing spend. The emphasis on scaling its model and technology, matching unsold ticket inventory with interested punters (both consumer and corporate — see below), is noteworthy as it’s at the heart of what sites like Last Second Tickets do, which is to use technology to create a marketplace that rids itself of as many inefficiencies as possible. There’s nothing more inefficient than empty venues.
To that end, along with its consumer facing site and ticket marketplace, Last Second Tickets’ growth appears to be in its corporate offering. It provides a loyalty scheme for corporate clients, such as Tesco, Mercedes-Benz and Philips, consisting of both off-the-shelf customer or employee loyalty programmes and white label offerings. Of note, the London company recently won a two year exclusive contract to provide FunFinder, a new customer retention service for telco Orange.
It’s a point well-made by Markco Media’s Pearson in a statement: “When choosing to invest, scalability is always at the forefront of my mind and the way Craig and his team have built a unique business with multiple arms is exciting. I have no doubt the company will continue to successfully develop in the corporate loyalty arena, which has proved to be especially profitable, attracting household name brands in a relatively short space of time.”
Founded three years ago, Last Second Tickets currently employs 17 full-time staff and operates out of Markco Media’s London office.