Going into the B. League’s second season, the Sunrockers Shibuya are trying to fill their arena more with the help of an online ticket sales expert.
The East Division club announced on Thursday that it has established a partnership with Hunza, Inc., a subsidiary of Shibuya-based social networking service company Mixi, Inc.
Hunza runs a secondary ticket marketplace website and smartphone app called Ticket Camp, and fans seeking to purchase tickets from individuals who have them and want to sell them can do so through the website.
The Sunrockers, who play home games at Aoyama Gakuin University’s 3,000-seat arena, were 16th among the first division’s 18 teams in home attendance last season (2,238 spectators per game).
Shibuya seeks to boost its attendance figures during the upcoming 2017-18 campaign.
Hunza will also sell Sunrockers tickets on their own as well. There will be 45 first-row court-side area seats for all 30 home games, and fans will be able to buy tickets for the area through Ticket Camp. The court-side area will be called “Ticket Camp Dunk Seats.” There will be no advertisement boards between the seats and court that existed last year.
Hunza applies “dynamic pricing” to the Dunk Seats area, meaning the ticket prices will differ depending on the matchups. The ticket prices range from ¥7,400 to ¥9,000.
In the past, Hunza has partnered with the NPB’s Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters and done a similar thing at Sapporo Dome.
“Hopefully, we have more fans who want to purchase our court-side seats with this partnership with Hunza,” Sunrockers president Hiroaki Oka said at a news conference at Mixi’s headquarters in Shibuya. “We would be happy to have a variety of fans and it would benefit our club.”
It was also announced that the Sunrockers and Hunza will donate basketballs to schools and public facilities in Shibuya Ward.
“We as Mixi have always been aware of how we can contribute to the society,” said Hiroki Morita, the president of Mixi. “Since our foundation (in 2000), we have never stepped out of Shibuya. Hopefully, we will be able to give some good ideas (to the Sunrockers).”
Hunza was established in 2013 and Mixi acquired it in 2015 as a group company. It has about three million registered members on Ticket Camp.
“It’s just been four years since we started our service and we are trying to spread this culture (of the secondary-market ticket marketplace),” Hunza president Ryo Sasamori said. “This time, we and the Sunrockers have coincided with each other in terms of what we want to do. And hopefully, there will be more teams, leagues or any other entertainment industry that will agree to do what we do. This is the first step for that.”