Fanimal, which bills itself as a “live events platform and zero-fee ticket marketplace,” has announced a $4 million funding round amid the ongoing return of crowd-based entertainment.
Venice, California-headquartered Fanimal, which formed in 2019 and aims “to make ticket buying a more social and risk-averse experience,” just recently unveiled this latest multimillion-dollar raise. One Bullpen Capital led the round, which also drew support from Sensor Tower stakeholder Pear VC and Burst Capital. (Fanimal “was built out of the Pear VC accelerator program.”)
Fanimal has now raised a total of $6 million since becoming available to users at 2020’s beginning, and higher-ups relayed that their startup had achieved “explosive growth of adoption among fans” in 2021. Execs attributed the purported hike in customers to “Fanimal’s price transparency and unique group purchase model.”
And on this front, the business dedicated much of its formal release to touting the perceived significance of said “patented” group purchase model, which eliminates “the need for one person to bear the financial burden of buying a bunch of tickets up front,” according to Fanimal.
A quick examination of Fanimal’s website shows that four-day general-admission passes to the forthcoming Lollapalooza will cost $355 apiece (against a $350 base price and $64.64 in service charges directly from organizers) if purchased alone, besides $15 for shipping. However, upping the transaction’s passes to three reduces their price to $348 each, whereas a group of eight would pay $332 per pass when buying together, reflecting the maximum discount, the website states.
Back to the funding announcement, the three-year-old company likewise emphasized the broader goal of rendering the ticket-purchasing process more social, as mentioned, including through “a messaging product that allows group members to not only coordinate logistics surrounding the event itself, but also send each other GIFs and discuss all the other details of their unforgettable experience.”
Regarding Fanimal’s plans for the capital, the multimillion-dollar tranche is expected to help accelerate product development, with “a set of event organizer tools” poised to roll out sometime in the future.
Tellingly, cofounder and CEO Jonny Halprin in a statement doubled down on the social element of his platform – opting not to highlight the “zero hidden service fees” and discounts involved with buying passes despite the years-running criticism of competing ticket services’ own fees.
“Nobody goes to live events alone, but the only way to buy tickets is alone,” said the former Boston Consulting Group team member Halprin. “We’ve changed that. Our group purchase technology has made buying tickets part of the social experience, less about the transaction and more about who you’re going with.”
After arbitrary lockdown measures and large-gathering bans decimated live entertainment in 2020 and 2021, crowd-based happenings appear to be returning to form in 2022. Moreover, a considerable number of fans and artists are looking to make up for lost time, if ticket sales and tour schedules are any indication, and it’ll be interesting to see whether a new player with an innovative business model (and without a trail of negative press) can establish a foothold in the space moving forward.