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Watchdog launches Phase 1 probe into Viagogo-StubHub deal

UNITED KINGDOM -
World News
April 24, 2020

THE COMPETITION and Markets Authority (CMA) has confirmed it will enter Phase 1 of an investigation into the acquisition of eBay-owned StubHub  by Viagogo, after issuing both resale websites with an Initial Enforcement Order in January (see Audience, issue 241).

The CMA’s action prevents the two companies from integrating, although completion of the $4.05 billion takeover has been completed.

Adam Webb of anti-ticket touting campaigner FanFair Alliance says the acquisition is spectacularly ill-timed since the Covid-19 pandemic hit global markets and that the companies, merged or otherwise, now face huge challenges.

“[Viagogo CEO] Eric Baker has paid is way above what StubHub should be worth,” Webb tells Audience. “Given the crazy money Viagogo is paying for the company [StubHub], they may need to charge customers more in fees or slip back into breaking the law.”

The CMA is scheduled to announce its decision on 11 June.

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