Back in May, online ticket marketplace Viagogo faced possible prosecution, being investigated by the National Trading Standards (NSA) over “misleading” ticket prices and failing to change the misleading information on their website.
However, it seems now the tables have turned, because Viagogo are now suing Ed Sheeran’s promoter over alleged fraud. Stuart Galbraith and his firm Kilimanjaro Ltd., have been accused of confiscating genuine tickets from fans and forcing them to purchase new ones, defrauding them out of millions of pounds during Ed Sheeran’s 2017 tour.
The lawsuit filed in Germany claims that Sheeran’s promoter set up fake Viagogo stalls at venues, all for the purposes of “luring fans into declaring that they were Viagogo customers. The promoter then confiscated their authentic tickets and forced fans to buy new ones.”
Kilimanjaro denied the claim, and told The Associated Press via email that they will “defend against this action vigorously and looks forward to doing so in court.”
Kilimanjaro also tweeted about the lawsuit, posting: “The claims made today by Viagogo are ludicrous, laughable and most importantly totally false.”
A statement from Kilimanjaro: pic.twitter.com/I8eS4YkDuh
— Kilimanjaro Live (@KilimanjaroLive) September 4, 2018
The lawsuit was described by the promoter as a “transparent attempt to deflect attention” from the upcoming appearance in front of the UK parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, which both companies will attend.
Viagogo’s head of business development, Christopher Miller, will face questions from MPs, including questions about the firm’s conduct.
Whether these claims are true or not, the secondary ticket selling site are currently facing court action for allegedly breaking consumer protection laws. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), who filed the lawsuit last week, said VGG had failed to make changes on their site to meet standards of the law, despite several warnings. Other ticket reselling sites, StubHub, GETMEIN! and Seatwave already agreed to make the changes in kind.
“Unfortunately, while other businesses have agreed to overhaul their sites to ensure they respect the law, Viagogo has not,” CMA’s chief executive Andrea Coscelli stated.
When asked about the lawsuit against Kilimanjaro, Viagogo would not state why they chose Germany to file the lawsuit, claiming it to be for “legal reasons”, but said it’s the start of litigation “being taken in multiple countries.”
Despite their claims, it’s highly unlikely that what they are accusing Kilimajaro of are true, given the website’s tarnished reputation, and for ongoing legal troubles this year. Either way, we’ll just have to see what the real outcome of this battle will be, won’t we?
Story by Emily Clark
Featured Photo Credit: Empire