Media & entertainment tech Startups

SeatGeek Raises $238M At Unicorn Valuation After SPAC Deal Canceled

Illustration of $100 bills.

New York-based SeatGeek raised $238 million as part of a Series E at a $1 billion pre-money valuation.

The funding announcement comes just about two months after SeatGeek’s $1.35 billion deal to go public via a SPAC was mutually canceled by both the SPAC, RedBall Acquisition Corp., and the company due to unfavorable market conditions.

The new round mints the ticket marketplace as a unicorn. The company last raised a $57 million Series D in 2017.

Led by longtime investor Accel, the new round also saw participation from Wellington Management, Arctos Sports Partners and Ryan Smith, founder and executive chairman of Qualtrics and founder of Smith Entertainment Group.

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“Securing $238 million in a volatile market speaks to the strength of our business and the incredible opportunity ahead. We have ambitious plans for the future and are approaching business expansion with extra diligence, care and a long-term view of success in mind,” said Jack Groetzinger, CEO and co-founder of SeatGeek in a statement.

The company plans to use the new funding for several investments in the business, including  its event-day experience and return policy platforms.

The SPAC market

SeatGeek’s SPAC deal was just one of many SPAC deals canceled this year as the market for such vehicles cooled significantly from a record-setting 2021. Many companies that went public via SPAC last year have seen significant declines in a turbulent public market.

RedBall was backed by RedBird Capital, as well as Billy Beane of the Oakland Athletics, Brooklyn Nets star Kevin Durant, and others.

“Given the volatility in the public markets, together we determined that a termination of the business combination was in the best interest of all parties,” Groetzinger said at the time the deal was canceled.

Founded in 2009, SeatGeek has now raised approximately $400 million, according to Crunchbase data.

Illustration: Dom Guzman

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