The ticketing industry’s arguably most disruptive start-up Eventbrite has opened the doors of its London offices today. This is the first international expansion of the U.S. based business and they’re only just getting started.
The event platform has passed one milestone after another in the past two years as ticket gross sales jumped up to $400 million in December 2010 from $100 million in January 2009. Up to this expansion Eventbrite was used in 147 countries and has issued nearly 40 million tickets since it was founded in 2006. A recent Series E round of funding worth $50 million will be used to aim for bigger events, invest in mobile products and build more analytics and social media tools.
Founding couple Julia and Kevin Hartz have become thought leaders in social commerce through their dead-on use of social networks to encourage users’ sharing habits. Facebook is driving Eventbrite’s sales the most and will surely shift up a gear with the implementation of frictionless sharing.
“We have always learned from observing our customers,” said Kevin. “Their feature requests help inform our product roadmap. Their sharing behaviours influenced us to become early partners with Facebook. And now, in watching the activity across our platform throughout the UK, it is clear that it’s time for Eventbrite to focus on serving customers beyond the United States.”
Choosing London as their first expansion goal was partly due to the success Eventbrite has seen in the capital year on year. That is a 99% growth in the number of tickets processed and an 85% growth in the number of events posted.
It doesn’t stop in the UK. According to Kevin the business is “absolutely planning on expanding further”. For now this means soon-to-be localised webservices with support teams for Canada, Australia and New Zealand. We can also expect to read French and Spanish versions of the platform soon.
The U.S. team is used to an international vibe anyway, with employees from all around the globe. This might play its part in Eventbrite’s designation as one of San Francisco Business Times’ ‘Best places to work in the bay area’. VP of Marketing Tamara Mendelsohn explained the company priorities on working culture as thus: “We have learnt that a culture doesn’t build itself, it takes a lot of pro-active work. Our main mantra is to let our company employees own the culture.”
The good news for job-searching Londoners is that Eventbrite still needs to expand its British team in the next few months and is currently hiring – including a managing director.