UNITED KINGDOM (CelebrityAccess) Viagogo has told a UK parliament committee that it will not attend, and not for the first time, a hearing today.
Viagogo’s Prabhat Shah has sent an open letter to Damian Collins, MP of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, saying it will not be represented at tomorrow’s oral evidence session by the company’s Christopher Miller, head of business development, because his presence could “jeopardise” legal proceedings initiated against the company by the UK’s Competitions and Markets Authority.
The company snubbed a previous hearing in March, at the time, prompting the committee’s Nigel Huddleston MP to denounce Viagogo’s “lack of respect to parliament and, by extension, the British public,” according to IQ magazine.
Viagogo said it could not obtain assurances from the DCMS that its presence would not “jeopardise our position with respect to the ongoing legal proceedings which the CMA has initiated against us.”
The committee is expected to hear evidence today from Stuart Galbraith, CEO of promoter Kilimanjaro Live, which is being sued by Viagogo for invalidating thousands of secondary tickets to Ed Sheeran’s UK arena shows.
“We do not accept Viagogo’s arguments for failing to appear today,” Collins said in a statement. “Mr Miller has no valid reason not to attend and answer our questions on secondary ticketing. The session does not fall within the scope of the house’s sub judice [part of ongoing legal proceedings and therefore prohibited from discussion elsewhere] resolution, and the CMA has no objection to the session taking place. As is usual, we would take great care not to discuss issues to do with the future court case.
“Consumers deserve answers to the huge volume of concerns about secondary ticketing abuse. It is hard not to view this eleventh-hour withdrawal cynically. Viagogo’s non-attendance is a gross discourtesy, the more so given the company’s failure to attend last year.
“If Mr Miller fails to appear his place will be set out and the questions put, involving much public embarrassment and the disappointment of consumers and users who expect answers.”