With the UK government having confirmed that mass events, including conferences can commence from October 1, it’s full steam ahead for the 2020 edition of ALSD International – Europe’s leading event for the Premium Seat & Sports Hospitality sector – being held at the home of the newly crowned Premier League champions, Liverpool Football Club’s Anfield Stadium October 12-13, with virtual elements to run in tandem to ensure no one misses out.
Liverpool is a city best known for music and sport, being home to the Beatles, two Premier League football clubs, namely Everton and Liverpool, as well as M&S Bank Arena (part of an event campus that includes ACCL and Exhibition Centre Liverpool), and Aintree Racecourse, home of The Randox Health Grand National Festival.
The city hosts a plethora of sporting and live entertainment events, including the annual Liverpool International Horse Show. In terms of major event hosting, Liverpool and nearby St Helens will welcome the Tonga and Italy men’s national teams next year for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup. St Helens R.F.C.’s 18,000-capacity Totally Wicked Stadium, considered by many to be the best purpose-built club rugby stadium in the country, has been chosen to host two men’s matches – while Anfield, home to Liverpool FC, is to host a men’s quarter-final, as well as the opening match and ceremony for the women’s tournament. Meanwhile, the M&S Bank Arena will showcase the final of the wheelchair competition, new to next year’s event.
Working in collaboration with UK Sport and British Gymnastics, Liverpool will also host the 2022 edition of the prestigious World Gymnastics Championships, which will be one of the largest international sporting events ever to be held in the city with an estimated 600 gymnasts from 90 countries taking part in 8 days of competition.
Located just 40 minutes from the other Northern powerhouse that is Manchester - home to Manchester City and Manchester United football clubs and their world-famous homes, Old Trafford and Etihad Stadium, in addition to such iconic venues as Emirates Old Trafford and Manchester Arena - and with a slew of projects on the boards across the region, Liverpool is the perfect location for the third edition of Europe’s one and only event dedicated to the Premium Seat and Sports Hospitality sector, ALSD International.
Projects in focus
In terms of the projects that will be featured during ALSD International, which is set to be one of the very first industry conferences since the pandemic began, these include:
- Everton’s new 52,000-seat stadium at Bramley-Moore Dock
- Liverpool’s proposed development of the Anfield Road Stand
- Manchester Arena’s major redevelopment plans
- Chester Race Group’s £100m masterplan for Chester Racecourse
- The new 17,080-capacity YTL Arena Bristol
- Ascot's corporate box upgrades
- NEC Group's Resorts World Arena extension
- Rangers’ enhancement of Ibrox, including two new hospitality lounges
- Fulham’s redevelopment of Craven Cottage’s Riverside Stand
- Plus Euroleague Basketball and LaLiga will be discussing a wide range of topics
The high-ranking industry experts taking part in the conference sessions will provide insights as to key learnings, best practices and how best to deliver increased revenue through new builds, renovations and service expansions, in addition to via the latest technology, products, services and solutions.
ALSD International Executive Director and Sports Venue Business CEO, Katie McIntyre, said:
Never has there been a more important time for the industry to come together, to share ideas and know-how. With speakers confirmed from across Europe, North America and even wider afield, ALSD International 2020 provides a platform for clubs & teams, stadia & arenas, sports & live entertainment venues, leagues & federations to discuss key learnings and best practices, and also hear from architecture & design firms, producers & suppliers, as to the products, services and solutions that can help them achieve their objectives in these strange times.
The inaugural event, held in London, with tours of Wembley Stadium, The SSE Arena Wembley and Fulham’s Craven Cottage, drew 120 attendees. Last year, we welcomed 250+ high-level industry executives from across Europe, the Middle East and the Americas to Dublin, where attendees enjoyed the craic at Croke Park, Aviva Stadium and 3Arena. For 2020, we expect the total audience to be in excess of 300, between physical attendees at Anfield and those joining us remotely, with this being our first hybrid event, as we move into a whole new normal of streaming and remote presentations.
One of the industry experts that will be sharing his know-how is Tom Lynch, Director of Business Development, ASM Global, operators of Manchester Arena. Speaking of the iconic venue’s redevelopment, he said:
Our plans will reimagine the whole customer experience at the venue, with a new exterior, a completely remodelled entrance sequence, additional concourse circulation space and some great new VIP experiences.
We plan to embed sustainability into every aspect of the redevelopment, as part of our mission to become one of the lowest carbon venues in Europe. We’re currently consulting with our neighbours and the City Council, and we look forward to launching public consultation to welcome input from the rest of the city.
We will increase capacity of the venue to 24,000 by creating new entrances and exits, to bring more people to shows while ensuring safe and speedy entry and exit to events. Our plans are consistent with existing planning policy and support regional economic strategy, including many of the recommendations made within The Greater Manchester Music Review.
Tom is just one of 45+ experts confirmed to share their insights, with ALSD International 2020 to feature a range of high calibre industry executives, including:
- Billy Hogan, Managing Director & CCO, Liverpool FC
- Borja Gonzalex Bilbao, Stadium Business Manager, Athletic Club
- Luca Scafati, Director, Business Operations, EuroLeague Basketball
- Matt Roberts, Director of Research & Insights, Formula 1
- Robin Gollbach, Head of Business Development, FC Bayern Munich Basketball
- Guy Dunstan, Managing Director Arenas, NEC Group
- Marshall Glickman, CEO, G2 Strategic
- Shawn Doss, Executive Vice President, Elevate Sports Ventures
- Rob March, Head of Commercial, Chester Race Company
- George Vaughan, Head of Technology, Ascot Racecourse
- Une Marijke Jurkstaite, Ticket Sales Director & Chief Business Officer, BC Zalgiris Kaunas
- Rob Paddon, Venue Sales Director, Fulham FC
- Dr Bernie Mullin, Founder & CEO, The Aspire Group
- Andrew Billingham, Managing Director, YTL Arena Bristol
- Liz Pattinson, Head of Capital Projects & Estate Development, Ascot Racecourse
- Danny Macklin, CEO, Leyton Orient
- Tom McCann, Premium Experience & Venue Director, Arsenal
- Tom Lynch, Director of Business Development, ASM Global, operators of Manchester Arena
- Oliver Wright, Head of Hospitality & Sales, Everton
- Ben Williams, Commercial Director, ACC Liverpool Group
Due to the pandemic, this year’s event will be a hybrid affair, with a range of virtual elements to run in tandem with the physical event - being held in the New Main Stand at Anfield - to ensure that everyone benefits from optimised opportunities to knowledge-share, network and do business, whether there in person or virtually.
Behind-the-scenes venue tours
The event will feature not only a high-level conference but also an exhibition hall showcasing the latest products, services and solutions, as well as numerous networking events and special behind-the-scenes tours of Anfield, Everton’s Goodison Park and M&S Bank Arena, all in addition to the world famous Liverpudlian hospitality.
Ben Williams, Commercial Director, ACCL Group, operator of M&S Bank Arena, said:
We are pleased to be able to give ALSD International attendees a behind the scenes glimpse at our exciting developments in the M&S Bank Arena. We are looking forward to welcoming guests to the Liverpool Gin Lounge for some great networking opportunities as part of what promises to be an interesting and fascinating conference.
Speaking about their hosting of ALSD International 2020, Paul Cuttill, Vice President – Stadium Operations, Liverpool Football Club, said:
We’re delighted to host the annual ALSD International conference at Anfield Stadium in October this year and showcase the home of Liverpool Football Club. We are looking forward welcoming colleagues and delegates from across the premium seat and hospitality sector for what promises to be an exciting and informative event.
Bill Dorsey, ALSD Chairman, added:
This is the third year for ALSD International and each year is getting bigger and better. Even with the pandemic, we believe this year will be the largest show ever. This is a show headquartered in Europe and run by Katie McIntyre from the UK. The ALSD in the US will assist as is necessary but frankly, Katie has been in this space for 20 years. She will lead this now and in the future.
ALSD International 2019: Testimonials
Michele Kajiwara, Senior VP, Premium Sales & Service, STAPLES Center/AEG: “I got so much out of the show because of the dialogue that gets stimulated. Thank you for the masterful way that you are engaging us all globally.”
Andrew Billingham, Managing Director, YTL Arena Bristol: “Excellent ALSD International conference in Dublin, with tours of three great venues 3Arena, Aviva Stadium and Croke Park. Big thanks for an informative and varied programme.”
Steve Thornton, Group Head of Commercial & Hockey, Belfast Giants/The Odyssey Trust: “The event was fantastic. Great content and even better for networking. Overall, a top notch experience.”
James Glover, Hospitality Sales Manager, Marylebone Cricket Club/Lord’s: “Thank you for organising an excellent conference – it was great to meet such a mixture of people from the industry and to have the opportunity to visit such iconic stadia.”
Andrew Sidebotham, Executive Club Sales Team Leader, Manchester United: “Thank you for an amazing conference, its great content and excellent opportunities to meet people within the industry.”
David Robinson, Business Development Manager, Addvance IT/KAPPTURE:
“We exhibited and ran a panel session during ALSD International 2019 and have nothing but positive feedback. Organised with precision and with the delegates in mind from start to finish, it was an absolute pleasure to be involved in. We’re already looking forward to the 2020 event.”
Fergal Dempsey, Operations Manager, Connacht Rugby: “Thanks again for organising a great conference. Really enjoyed it and thought that there were some excellent fellow delegates while also lots of great industry people that had some really good offerings.”
Kenneth From, Premium Service Manager, Stockholm Live: “A huge thank you for the two really well organised days at Croke Park and Dublin. I and my colleagues thoroughly enjoyed it and came back to Sweden with lot’s of new ideas!”
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The 2020 edition of ALSD International – Europe’s leading event for the Premium Seat & Sports Hospitality sector, focusing on increasing revenue via new builds, renovations, service expansions & technology – is being hosted at the home of the newly crowned Premier League champions, Liverpool FC’s Anfield Stadium, October 12-13, with tours of our host venue, Everton’s Goodison Park and M&S Bank Arena. NB: The physical event will be complemented by a range of virtual elements to ensure no one misses out!
The 2020 edition of ALSD International – organised by the Association of Luxury Suite Directors and Sports Venue Business – will feature a high-level conference, an exhibition hall showcasing the latest products, services & solutions and numerous networking events, ensuring optimised opportunities to knowledge-share, network and do business, whether in person or virtually.
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