That’s the Ticket: Eventbrite Targets Berlin After High Organic Growth

By David Knight |

Think back to the last, say, ten startup events you attended, be they in Berlin or anywhere else. How many of them used Eventbrite to organise their tickets? The answer is likely to at least be ‘most of them’ with the San Francisco-based platform becoming nearly ubiquitous in the tech event ticketing space.

And having seen the organic growth in German users – and having dipped its toes in the Berlin waters by sponsoring last summer’s Tech Open Air festival – Eventbrite has officially arrived in the German capital, the only place in continental Europe where it has someone on the ground.

That someone is Niko Woischnik, co-creator and organiser of Tech Open Air, who is now helping Eventbrite build its presence in Germany as a marketing consultant. He began by – what else – hosting an event at betahaus on Tuesday to explain the appeal of the company.

And it clearly has appeal. Founded in 2006, in 2012 Eventbrite saw total gross ticket sales of $600 million (having reach the $1 billion mark overall in June) and notched up 1.8 million app downloads. Events using Eventbrite have been held in 179 different countries and the company employs more than 230 people. And its last funding round in May 2011 – a Series E – was worth $50 million.

Why has it been so successful? The answer seems to lie, as per usual, in its simplicity, both for event organiser and end user. Go to the website, log in, register for an event; then just pull up the user app on your phone on arrival and it can be scanned using the organiser app.

Its strategy has also been key. Eventbrite focuses on the long tail of events – not Madonna concerts or Bayern Munich matches, but wine tasting or fund raisers or arts and crafts. Or, indeed, tech meet ups.

“Although the tech community in Berlin is already quite knowledgeable about the platform,” Niko told Silicon Allee, “our focus is still on building out that startup community, but in the future we will also be focusing on music, on art and other creative communities.”

That is why Eventbrite was such a good fit with TOA, he added. And it’s about time some attention was put on Germany, where companies like Amiando are providing stiff competition. Of course, it’s always gratifying to see a large Silicon Valley startup deem Berlin worthy of particular attention, but surely the German capital, as such an event-centric city, is a perfect place for expansion?

“The more mature ecosystems have even more events. We probably sometimes think, wow, there are already so many events going on in the startup scene [here in Berlin], but apparently that is nothing compared to what is going on in San Francisco. Events are just a great way of bringing people together in the real world who share a common interest in order to exchange knowledge, to collaborate, and that is something that is important not just for the startup community but for all kinds of communities.”

As market entries go, Eventbrite shouldn’t have too much of a hard time in Berlin’s tech scene where its platform is already popular. As always, it will be staying on top of the chasing pack that will prove a challenge.