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SEC vows to counter touting and announces £150m expansion plan

News
7 August 2018
Susan-Aitken

THE OWNER of Glasgow’s SSE Hydro (cap. 15,000) says it “welcomes any initiatives that provide transparency for fans” following another ticket touting excess reported in the Daily Record newspaper.

Leader of Glasgow City Council Susan Aitken has announced that she is to discuss the matter with members of the SEC board, on which she also sits, and explore how concert-goers can be better protected from ticket touts at its next meeting in September.

“This is obviously a matter for SEC – but it seems clear that the world of ticketing and events has changed considerably since the contract began four years ago,” says Aitken.

A spokesperson for the SEC says, “We are part of an industry that acknowledges that there is a resale market so as a venue we welcome any initiatives that provide transparency for fans.”

SMP Pete Wishart, a former member of Scottish rock bands Runrig and Big Country, is also calling on the SEC to do more to protect music fans.

“Even during my time in the music industry touting was a big problem, but now with touts having the ability to hoover up tickets
from a primary seller and sell them on at huge profit, it is very much worse,” he says.

“I welcomed the announcement from The O2 [in London] that they were to end their agreement with StubHub and I really think that the SEC ought to be considering similar proposals to protect fans from being ripped-off by touts.”

The venue’s primary ticketing company is Ticketmaster, which owns resale sites Seatwave and GetMeIn, where tickets for SSE Hydro shows often appear at inflated prices.

Meanwhile, SEC chief executive Peter Duthie has confirmed that the company is looking to secure funding for expansion, which he says will be of “significant benefit to the Glasgow, Scottish and UK economies”.

A Planning Permission in Principle application was made to the city council in July, when SEC released its financial results for 2017/18, showing that turnover increased by one per cent to £29.1 million.

Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) increased by 11 per cent to £3.8m and its operating profit increased by 19 per cent to £1.3m.

“The development plans fit with the objectives of Glasgow City Council, as major shareholder, to ensure additional economic benefit across the city in terms
of spend on hotels, restaurants, retail, and the related employment creation,” says Duthie.

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