In her latest column on local small businesses, Waltham Forest Business Network’s Jo Sealy meets a couple with a passion for events
Ticketlab is an events ticketing website that provides a super-simple way to set up events and start selling or allocating tickets. It’s free to upload events and has lower booking fees than similar sites.
Established by Riley Ramone and Rebecca Breen (known as ‘Becs’) the idea came originally from a music-in-libraries project, Get it Loud in Libraries, which Becs had worked on at university. Several years later when the two met through work they realised that issues around offering tickets with existing providers and the high booking fees they charge, with few other alternatives, provided a business opportunity.
Ticketlab was launched in August 2012, with Riley building the initial development for the site over the course of a year, and Becs in charge of the content and user experience. The couple designed and built the site around their full-time jobs.
Riley says: “One of our biggest achievements so far has been to handle the tickets for a charity trophy match for the FA Women’s Premier League (FAWPL). With 3,000 tickets on sale across 19 different ticket types it was quite an undertaking to set up, but we had a custom ticket page live within 48 hours and the event went off without a hitch.”
Riley and Becs face competition from the bigger ticketing companies who are able to make themselves more visible online. However, a focus on making local connections with businesses which need their services has helped to grow Ticketlab’s fan base.
Becs explains: “We’re working hard to make Ticketlab synonymous with setting up an event in Waltham Forest. We’ve been working with local businesses in Waltham Forest to solve their ticketing needs, building custom functionality to solve their specific problems and compete with larger ticketing companies.
“A lot of small businesses don’t have enough confidence with the technical side of things to be comfortable setting up and managing events and tickets themselves, so we’re always on hand to help. It’s a level of customer service I don’t think exists on other ticketing sites.”
While there have been challenges of building the business over the past six years, Riley is clear that one of the best things has been to be able to move closer to quitting his day job. Within the next year the aim is for Ticketlab to be making enough money to fully support either Riley or Becs.
Riley says: “To other entrepreneurs who are looking to take the plunge into business, I would say; ensure you have an audience for your product or company. For us, seeing the events go ahead either in person or on social media, and knowing that something you’ve built has helped make that happen, is very rewarding!”
For more information about Ticketlab:
Do you know a great small business in Waltham Forest with a story to tell?
Email [email protected]