Seatwave Goes Dutch

Seatwave has ramped up its international expansion by buying the leading ticket exchange in Benelux (Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg).

At press time there was no news of how much of its US$25 million war chest it’s spent on Dutch-based Skelper B.V., but Seatwave chief exec Joe Cohen – who founded his company a couple of years ago – is describing it as “a fantastic acquisition.”

Since opening in London in 2006, Cohen has launched secondary ticketing operations in Germany, Italy and Spain, while the company’s also been involved in some high-profile flare-ups with major promoters including Live Nation, Harvey Goldsmith and Marek Lieberberg.

The acquisition of Skelper (or Scalper) means Seatwave becomes the leading secondary ticket service for top Dutch soccer clubs including PSV Eindhoven and Feyenoord, and other leading events organizers in Holland, Belgium and Luxembourg.

Skelper co-founder and managing director David van Hoytema will continue to run the company with his existing team. It will operate as Seatwave’s European Division, and is likely to be re-branded as Seatwave within a few months.

In February Seatwave announced it had secured US$25 million in Series C Funding from existing investors including Atlas Ventures, Mangrove Capital Partners and Holtzbrinck Ventures.

It claims to have more than 250,000 tickets available for sale at any one time and be the most-trafficked ticket exchange website in Europe.

In 2007, Seatwave customers listed more than 1.7 million tickets for events in no fewer than 38 countries on its site.