Event management platform Eventbrite announced a significant milestone today: over $1 billion in gross ticket sales since its launch. That puts the online ticket and registration tool in a very comfortable position as it continues to roll out its global localized expansion, with an immediate focus on the European market. It’s also an important step in helping the startup achieve its long-term goal of becoming the go-to brand for events of all kinds the whole world over.
Already this year, Eventbrite launched localized versions of its website in Canada, France and Spain, and company co-founder and CEO Kevin Hartz is currently in Europe working on the next stages of that expansion. The company is seeing a lot of uptake across the pond, which is helping guide its progression and chart a logical course for growth.
“In particular, we’ve seen a nice uptake in Canada,” Hartz said. “Now, we’re working hard on rolling the business out into western Europe. We’ve kind of gone where the organic growth has taken us, and we’ve seen the business grow organically first primarily in English-speaking countries, but now we’re starting to language localize and see growth there.”
The increased growth and expansion into new territories has meant that Eventbrite is looking to bring on new talent, too, but Hartz is quick to point out that the company is still being very judicious about its spending. “We’ve got a big balance sheet: we’ve raised $80 million and still have the majority of that in the bank,” he said. “We’re investing and we’re investing heavily in overseas growth. Hiring is important for us, but we’re also cautious in this very frothy market not to hire too fast or get too carried away.”
Hartz and his team may be celebrating this important milestone and looking to add additional localizations, but the big picture is all about building lasting value and making Eventbrite into a company that can stand on its own long-term. “Like eBay has so many different product categories, we have so many event categories and a lot of room to grow, and that’s what we’ll do,” Hartz said, describing Eventbrite’s overarching strategy. “We want to build an independent business that’s here a few decades from now, so inevitably, we want to be a standalone public company, but we don’t have a specific timeline for that.”
There are lots of young competitors cropping up in the event planning space, including Planana, Picatic and Atendy, but Hartz said that Eventbrite isn’t that worried about the competition, and is instead focused on its own growth and product pipeline. It definitely has a dominating lead in the space, and an IPO is a logical next step should the company continue to extend its reach and rack up ticket sales.