Live events sector
In France, Viagogo has been ordered to change its “deceptive” sales and marketing practices in France by the Directorate-General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF) which has taken injunctions out against Switzerland-based Viagogo and its Delaware-based division that operates viagogo.fr.
The DGCCRF said Viagogo must stop its misleading commercial practices within the meaning of Articles L.121-2 and L.121-4 of the Consumer Code. these practices include displaying prices that do not include add-on fees (so called ‘drip pricing’) and Viagogo must stop misleading consumers on the availability of the tickets offered. The DGCCRF added that the resale platform should also not resell tickets for subsidised events beyond their face value.
The DGCCRF has not disclosed any potential punishment or deadline for Viagogo to comply, but the authority is empowered to fine companies which break French competition law. The resale of tickets without permission from the original seller is prohibited under French law, and Viagogo is believed to owe promoters’ association Prodiss some hundreds of thousands of Euros in fines.
The French Consumer Federation (FRC) had already lodged a criminal complaint with the Geneva Public Prosecutor against Viagogo accusing the company of breaching unfair competition regulkations with the FRC sating “We have concerns about a number of things, including the fact that the notes do not exist at the time of purchase and so it’s not just a question of resale. In addition, the terms of sale are aggressive for the customer. The FRC said it has received more than 100 complaints from consumers about the resale site.