Fears new law could see job cuts at Limerick-based ticket resale firm

Nick Rabbitts

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Nick Rabbitts

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nick@limerickleader.ie

Fears new law could see job cuts at Limerick-based ticket resale firm

Minister Richard Bruton performed the official opening of the Viagogo offices in Plassey in January 2015

PROPER legislation on ticket touting will ensure no jobs are lost from companies like viagogo, which employs 150 people in Limerick.

That’s the view of Sinn Fein TD Maurice Quinlivan, responding to fears from Fine Gael Senator Maria Byrne who called on Jobs Minister Heather Humphreys to ensure positions at the firm are not “jeopardised”.

She even went as far to say as she would “find it difficult” to support the legislation if it led to the loss of local jobs.

The government has announced legislation which bans the above-face value resale of tickets in venues with a capacity of more than 1,000.

But Ms Byrne says viagogo, whose business model is based on the resale of tickets, could suffer.

“It’s a massive employer in Limerick, with 150 employees currently on its books and plans to grow its staff to around 250,” Ms Byrne said. “I was alarmed to learn that ticket resale sites like the Ticketmaster company Seatwave closed down when it introduced similar legislation.”

But Mr Quinlivan, whose party sought legislation to tackle touting, said he doesn’t believe the new law if passed will see job cuts.

“These are not reasons why we should not proceed. There is no need for a single job to be lost in this area if properly regulated. The new bill from government must set out limits, to give consumers rights to reasonably priced tickets. Like everything else, some people are going to ignore the law but for the vast majority of the population, I believe legislation on this area of reselling will have a significant impact,” the Dail deputy said.

Ms Byrne said she hopes the proposed legislation beings “fairness” to consumers and to viagogo staff:  “The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation plays a key role in promoting fair competition in the marketplace, protect consumers and safeguard workers, however it also has a duty to create an environment which supports job creation and maintenance,” she argued.