CMA prepares further legal action against Viagogo

CMA prepares further legal action against Viagogo

The Competition And Markets Authority (CMA) is preparing further legal action against Viagogo, saying the resale site is still failing to comply with a court order to overhaul its practices. 

The watchdog launched court action against the Swiss-headquartered company last August over allegations it was breaking consumer protection law. 

As part of the order, Viagogo was required to clearly and prominently disclose information including seat location, restrictions on use, face value price and whether the seller is a business or connected to the event organiser or Viagogo.

Viagogo argued it had made the necessary changes, but the CMA has now released a statement saying the platform's actions have not gone far enough.

A CMA spokesperson said: “The CMA has today warned Viagogo it is still not compliant with the court order we secured, requiring improved information be displayed about the tickets listed for resale on its site.

“Although some improvements have been made since we first demanded action to address areas of non-compliance, further checks have shown there are still issues of concern.  

“For a company not to comply with a court order is clearly very serious. We are therefore now preparing to take legal action to ask a court to find Viagogo in contempt.”

Viagogo has issued a statement saying the company "strongly believe" it has not breached the order.

"We take the CMA’s concerns very seriously. However, we strongly believe we are not in breach of the court order," said a spokesperson. "As the CMA indicated, we have successfully made several improvements to our platform to meet the compliance requirements of the order. We remain committed to working closely with the CMA and to achieving the highest standards possible on behalf of the thousands of people who use Viagogo every day.”

FanFair Alliance, which campaigns against industrial-scale online ticket touting, has welcomed the latest development.

"We also share concerns about Viagogo's compliancy with its court order, and that the site continues to facilitate large-scale breaches of consumer law," said campaign manager Adam Webb. "All UK music fans should avoid this site."

Sharon Hodgson MP, Member of Parliament for Washington and Sunderland West and chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Ticket Abuse, added: “I am pleased that the CMA have today announced that they are preparing to take Viagogo to court to find them in contempt.

“This has been a long time coming, so I feel that it is only right that Viagogo are held to account for their parasitical actions, that have ripped off fans for far too many years.   

“As the chair of the APPG on Ticket Abuse, I will of course be watching this very closely. As will thousands of fans who have fallen victim to Viagogo. I echo the warnings of the Minister, Chair of the Select Committee and Fan Fair Alliance that fans should avoid buying from Viagogo.”

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