Toronto DIY ticketing company Universe (formerly known as Uniiverse) has been acquired by TicketMaster.
Uniiverse was founded in February 2012 by Craig Follett and Ben Raffi, with the seemingly paradoxical “dream of creating a platform that connects people through shared offline experiences.”
That emphasis on experience, though, is consistent with a new wave of tech-focused retail, such as Frank & Oak which also emphasizes the importance of “experience” over mere transactions.
The company now employs 30 people and counts over 28,000 event organizers worldwide using its platform. Aside from its Toronto office, Universe recently opened an office in San Francisco.
Universe differentiated itself by fostering a community feeling to its platform, allowing people to organize events, which users could access through a mobile app, ranging from big-name concerns to local yoga meet-ups or frisbee hangouts.
“Universe’s advanced DIY ticketing and event marketing platform will not only provide event organizers with amazing tools to manage their events, but their plug-and-play distributed commerce and analytics products will also benefit clients across the entire Ticketmaster portfolio, including festivals,” said Ticketmaster North America President Jared Smith.
TicketMaster also announced the acquisition of Austin, Texas based festival ticketer Front Gate Tickets, describing pick-ups as strategic acquisitions.
For TicketMaster, the logic behind the acquisition seems simple: TicketMaster customer service wants to improve relations with it customers, who seem to be growing increasingly snarly. Reviews of TicketMaster U.K., for instance, can be harsh. The same can be said for TicketMaster Canada.
Terms of both acquisitions were not disclosed. Universe had previously raised $2.55 million, led by Real Ventures.
Universe says that its overall offering, along with its name, will remain the same and that existing customers will not be affected by the new ownership.