National Event Company, a ticket resale brokerage and member of the National Association of Ticket Brokers, has filed for bankruptcy days after its founder was arrested and charged with operating a $70 million Ponzi scheme.

Last week, Jason Nissen – CEO of the New York-based company – was arrested by federal authorities and charged with wire and mail fraud, falsely claiming he was spending investor money to purchase tickets for concerts and sporting events like the Super Bowl and the hit musical “Hamilton.”

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On Monday, National Event Company filed for bankruptcy, reporting the company had thousands of creditors, less than $10 million in assets and as much as $50 million in liabilities. Company officials laid off all but six employees and closed their Hollywood office, hoping to cut costs.

“The last remaining event for which NECO anticipates material sales of tickets is the 2017 US Open,” according to the bankruptcy filing. “The Debtor has previously purchased a substantial block of tickets for this popular Grand Slam tennis event, and anticipates being able to resell those tickets at a profit.”

NECO is being represented by attorney Stephen B. Selbst with the New York firm Herrick Feinstein. The filing covers four companies controlled by NECO, including World Events Group, and is taking place in federal bankruptcy court in the Southern District of New York. NECO officials have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, which generally allows company officials to retain control while a reorganization plan is executed. Crisis manager Timothy Puopolo with RAS Management Advisors will serve as Chief Restructuring Officer.

Company officials said they were unaware of Nissen’s alleged Ponzi scheme until May 10. They terminated him after he reportedly admitted to two investors that he had misappropriated millions of dollars. Nissen “represented to victims that he would use money lent to him and his companies by victims to purchase bulk quantities of premium tickets to sporting and entertainment events…However…Nissen used the victims’ money in large part to repay other victims and enrich himself,” according to the bankruptcy filing.

“To perpetuate his fraud,” the filing reads, “Nissen presented to his victims falsified financial documents and inflated accounts receivable ledgers as purported proof that their money was being used to purchase tickets for resale.”
NECO also owns Winter Music Fest LLC, which co-produced Minus Zero Winter Sports And Electronic Music Festival earlier this year with supermodel Kathy Ireland.
Dave Brooks
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Dave Brooks

Founder & Executive Editor at Amplify Media
Dave Brooks has over 15 years experience as a writer, including eight years as the Managing Editor of Venues Today. He started Amplify in 2014 to give the industry its own voice and turn up the volume on live entertainment.
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