'Ticket Summit New York' Rousing Success Despite Snow'Ticket Summit New York' Rousing Success Despite Snow

Hey mother nature, if you want to stop the secondary ticket industry from getting together and discussing business you're going to have to do a lot worse than a blizzard.

Despite a snowstorm that hampered travel all over the Northeast, hundreds of professionals still managed to turn out for the 2011 Ticket Summit in New York City. The bi-annual conference and trade show was held from Jan. 12 through Jan. 14 at the historic Waldorf=Astoria Hotel. It's the third year the popular summit has been held at the venerated Manhattan venue.

The convention looked at issues affecting the entire ticket industry, especially with regards to sports, entertainment, marketing, technology, and ticket laws. Attendees had the chance to participate in panel sessions facilitated by industry leaders and peruse product demonstrations by a variety of vendors.

"I was very impressed with the venue and the setting in New York, the number of attendees, the panels and the vendors. The event was very well run." said Jimmy Siegendorf, operator of Premium Seats USA and first time Ticket Summit attendee.

Of course, the real draw of the two-and-a-half day event was the networking. The summit provided ticket professionals numerous occasions to meet other liked-minded individuals and talk shop.

While there were many causal opportunities for attendees to connect with one another, the summit did schedule some formal networking activities including a cocktail party, a pub crawl, and a closing night gala at Nikki Beach in Midtown.

"The networking was great, and the industry needs those opportunities," said Caitlin Steel, an executive with Barry's Tickets.

Besides the networking, the summit's main attraction was the "Ticket Marketplaces" keynote panel. The discussion, held on Friday and moderated by Goldman Sachs vice president Ingrid Chung, explored the present and future of the ticket trade.

Comprising the panel was some of the industry's biggest names: Mike Janes, CEO of FanSnap; Jeff Kline, President of Veritix; Tony Knopp, co-founder of Spotlight Ticket Management Solutions; Jonathan Lesser, director of fulfillment for StubHub; John Walker, CEO of Tickets.com; Chris Willis, sales director for Seatwave; and Don Vaccaro, CEO of TicketNetwork.

One of the interesting revelations to come from the discussion was how well the secondary ticket market is doing compared to some areas of the sports and live entrainment industry.

Vaccaro offered his insight into the matter by saying consumers have become used to getting deals from the secondary ticket market. Janes added that fans turn to resellers for the convenience of buying tickets on their schedule, not the schedule of artists, promoters, and/or venues.

And Kline even went so far as to compliment all the secondary ticket brokers in the audience.

"Those of us in the primary ticketing space have learned quite a lot from all of you. It's about figuring out better ways to distribute tickets," praised Kline.

Certainly, an admission like that--from a prominent executive in the primary ticket business--would not have been made a few years ago. How times have changed.

"Ticket Marketplaces" had everyone at the summit talking and that included Jeremiah "Ice" Younossi, head of G-Unit Records' global touring division. Younossi attended the event as a panelist but got caught up in the excitement of the convention like he was a ticket broker.

"What I enjoy about this community, and this event in particular, is that the people are inspired and energized. They're turning a profit in the music industry when promoters and many others are not," proclaimed Younossui.

Judging from the robust turnout and the many positive comments from attendees, the 2011 Ticket Summit in New York City was a bona fide triumph and a thoroughly positive event.

"We are thrilled to have hosted yet another successful Ticket Summit conference and trade show. Ticket Summit weathered a blizzard and all, still receiving over 500 registrants, making for an extremely successful networking event," beamed Molly Martinez, executive director of the event.

The next Ticket Summit is scheduled for July 13-15 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Venetian Resort Hotel Casino. It will be the sixth consecutive year the 'West Coast" edition of the summit has been held at the world's largest 5-star hotel. So far, the weatherman is predicting no snow.
by Ryan D. Hogan
References and Bibliography
Ryan Hogan writes for Authority Tickets, a blog about the secondary ticket market and a website that sells affordable concert tour tickets.
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