FestivalPass launches with a membership platform that unlocks access to the show — tens of thousands of them.
The brainchild of founder and CEO Ed Vincent, festivalPass claims to be the world’s first subscription platform for live events, through which members can nab no-fee tickets to more than 80,000 concerts, festivals and more.
Membership can gain entry to such festivals as Coachella and ACL Music Festival, live shows featuring Dua Lipa, John Mayer, Billie Eillish and more.
Based in Austin, Texas, the festivalPass model uses a novel credit system, which can be redeemed for a smorgasbord of film, food, art and sports experiences across the U.S. and for booking rooms at thousands of hotels across the world at reduced rates.
Members rack up credits through a subscription plan, ranging from $19 to $99 each month.
The higher the tier, the lower the cost of the tickets, notes Vincent, whose business accepts cryptocurrency for subscription and ticket payments, and, from next month, launches its “Lifetime Founder NFT” for live events.
Vincent, an entrepreneur with 25 years’ business, technology and management experience, hit on the idea of applying the all-you-can eat approach to live entertainment while in New York City, waiting for the lockdown to lift.
“It was early in the pandemic and I was looking for a city to launch and grow festivalPass knowing live events would be coming back and the industry would be thirsty for a new way to play,” he tells Billboard.
Over a decade ago, Vincent spotted Austin, the home of SXSW, as a tech and music hotspot. “With the growing diversity in the Austin start-up culture and the overall love of music and live events that Austin offered,” he continues. “I chose to move to Austin in 2020 to grow festivalPass. It was the right choice.”
The immediate plan is to focus on North America as the business targets 1 million members on the platform.
The first likely expansion will be to Europe followed by Australia, Vincent explains. Other markets of interest include Asia and Latin America. “Our roadmap timing will be influenced by regional demand for our product and success in securing partners to help us grow in each region,” he adds.
Investors include Brian Sharples, co-founder HomeAway (sold to Expedia); Shelli Taylor, CEO of Alamo Drafthouse; Jacob Trouba, NHL professional for the NY Rangers; Tom Chavez (sold Krux to Salesforce and Rapt to Microsoft); Jason Dorsey, millennial and Gen Z expert; Townsquare Media, and others.
Sharples, Taylor and Dorsey join the advisory board, as does Lisa Licht, former CMO of Live Nation, among others, while experienced HomeAway – VRBO exec Stephan de Bernede is on board as festivalPass chief business officer.
“When we founded festivalPass, it was under the belief that live entertainment should not be transactional,” Vincent adds in a statement. “We envisioned a community in which members could interact and share around the entertainment passions they hold and where their participation is rewarded.”