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Fans Go Ape for NFC RFID at Monkey Week

Spanish company Ticketea is offering its NFC-enabled wristband and cloud-based software and app so that festivals, such as Monkey Week, can capture data for access control and onsite purchases.
By Claire Swedberg
Dec 08, 2016

Spanish event ticketing solution company Ticketea has launched a radio frequency identification system that it can build into its existing event-management solution for festivals that request the technology. The Near Field Communication (NFC) RFID-based system provides events with access control, while also enabling them to offer attendees cashless payments and links to social networks via an RFID-enabled wristband. Most recently, Ticketea provided the system to Monkey Week, a music festival that took place on Oct. 13-15 in El Puerto de Santa Maria, Spain.

Monkey Week, held annually in Southern Spain since 2013, features more than 200 bands performing on 13 stages. The festival not only includes performances by well-known bands, but also serves as a discussion forum for those working in the music business. Attendees pay €65 ($69) for access to the three-day festival. Approximately 1,500 people attended this year's event.

An employee reads the NFC tag in an attendee's wristband. (View this video for more information.)
The festival has been using Ticketea's management software each year. This year, however, it incorporated NFC technology into the system as well.

Ticketea was founded in 2009 as an events technology company focused on selling solutions enabling customers to manage their ticketing and related services themselves. "We want to bring the ability to organize an event to everyone, and provide all the tools to do so," says Andrés San José, Ticketea's head of international business development.

In the past, this consisted of providing the tickets and software to manage ticketing. Last year, however, Ticketea became interested in offering RFID technology in order to make festival access for ticket-holders automatic, and to enable event managers to provide attendees with payment options, as well as the ability to link to social networks.

"Until we launched, there were several players in the festival market which were offering (RFID) services on a standalone basis," San José recalls, so that access control or ticketing might be offered, but not payment or social networks. "We had some experiences with some of the players in the market, but the full experience of offering RFID was not as seamless as you would like it to be." The company decided to develop its RFID functionality as part of its full solution. "We offer it because we try to provide a 360-degree solution to event organizers," he explains.

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