Viagogo may be forced to refund fans millions of pounds, after a number of high-profile events and organisers chose not to accept tickets from the secondary ticketing website in recent months.
Viagogo has come under scrutiny for the discrepancy between their tickets original prices and their resale prices, which have sometimes been increased by hundreds of pounds.
Many artists, including Ed Sheeran, have complained that this price gouging is stopping fans from attending their concerts. There have also been complaints about the presence of ticket bots and dedicated resellers, who snap up large numbers of tickets and put that on Viagogo at an increased rate.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) issued court proceedings against Viagogo in August this year, over concerns it was breaking consumer protection law. It has now announced that Viagogo has agreed to comply with the order, which will force it make a series of changes to how it sells tickets by the middle of January 2019.
Among these will be a new condition that the firm funds an independent review of outstanding refund claims submitted since January 2016.
In an interview with The Guardian, ticketing expert Reg Walker said: “If you look at the number of people claiming refunds when tickets haven’t worked, it could cost them millions. I’d be surprised if it doesn’t.
“It’ll be interesting to see where this money is going to come from. Will it come from Viagogo, or will the company attempt to charge the people who sold the tickets that didn’t work? Touts could have a nasty surprise coming.”
Fans that are entitled to being reimbursed won’t need to do anything to make a claim and should be contacted by Viagogo. Those who bought tickets for Ed Sheeran, who made the controversial decision to refuse people entry that held Viagogo passes, could be refunded.
Viagogo responded to the news with the following statement: “Viagogo is a marketplace and doesn’t buy or sell tickets. Viagogo provides a platform for third party sellers to sell tickets to event goers. Viagogo does not set ticket prices, sellers set their own prices, which may be above or below the original face value. The tickets sold on Viagogo’s platform are genuine tickets that have been sold on by the original ticket purchaser in good faith.”