Tikkio - Solving the universal problems of cultural events organizers digitally

The origins of the booking and management platform Tikkio, go all the way back to 2009. Looking back, it was also the seed of what was to become our own product engineering agency, Kodebyraaet.

Sommerfesten, Giske. Photo: Johannes Lovund

Imagine a group of young tech savvy friends and cultural entrepreneurs, coming together to organize a music festival for more friends. That was us, at the small Giske island, west of Ålesund, Norway. We wanted to create a tool to organize volunteer work, enabling efficient two way communication, to keep track of activities and people.

The Summer Party at Giske (Sommerfesten på Giske) became an annual blast, still going strong.

Truth be told, we learned a lot about product development then, and even more later.

The product that wasn’t there

The pivoting of Tikkio into a booking system dawned in 2011. The organizers of Jugendfest tried to use the top of the line digital ticketing system at the time. It was not a good experience. The hardware was massive and the contracts were not particularly organizer friendly. Had it only worked, maybe they would have settled with the current offer. But, the solution flopped.

That year the ticket control at Jugendfest was manual and improvised. The ticket controllers were instructed to make a beeping sound themselves, to cover up the fact that thousands of tickets were in fact not validated.

The conclusion was obvious: “We can probably make a better system ourselves!”

From Jugendfest, Ålesund. Photo: Johannes Lovund

Getting into business

About this time some of us founded Kodebyraaet, and Tikkio was established as an independent company. Even though digital payment solutions have come a long way, back then they were quite primitive. Tikkio was pioneering in making good use of QR-codes and widespread smartphone cameras for validation, replacing the need for chunky and expensive hardware.

To illustrate how it was in the early days, printing digital tickets was still a thing. We realized that we could not rely on the print quality of each home printer. Therefore we made a solution that could validate tickets with some ink colors missing. Today, however, it’s mostly all digital.

Making a big difference

The success of Tikkio comes from the fact that it is developed in close collaboration with the users of the platform, who are passionate about organizing cultural events. The people behind Tikkio not only see the digital infrastructure as an enabler for themselves, but also for the whole industry. They want the organizers to thrive, also economically. With a mind-set of high volumes and scaling up, they are driven to tap the potential of digitalisation in the cultural event industry.

The problems Tikkio solves for themselves, they want their whole industry to take advantage of.

Before Tikkio hit the market, the costs were high and the structures were complicated. Tikkio cut margins from 14% to 4%, strengthening the economy of every organizer, enabling growth throughout the industry. At the same time they wanted to provide a far more integrated service. With Tikkio, organizers get all their commerce and management in one user-friendly interface, including tickets, food and beverage, transportation, accommodation, merchandise and whatever they need.

New markets await

Developing a system that allows a large number of users, keeping support at a minimum is the holy grail of digital transformation. At Kodebyraaet we have been the long term technology partner, providing capacity, knowledge and recruitment, to complement their in-house team.

During recent pre-covid years revenue and user base gained solid traction, as Tikkio has matured in the market as well as technologically. Pushing half a billion NOK in accumulated revenues, and more than 700 000 user accounts and 5000 organizers mainly in Norway, it is safe to say that Tikkio is ready to grow internationally. Things are already starting to move in Sweden, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Ireland and France.

We believe that Tikkio will bring more and better cultural events to the world, and make it easier for people to go out and enjoy it!

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