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Creating Connections for Life
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    The T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas celebrates it third anniversary in April. If it seems like the 20,000-seat arena has been around longer than that, it should, as the venue has already hosted some of the biggest sporting and concert shows in the world. The National Hockey League also came to Las Vegas and the arena got to host the 2018 Stanley Cup Final between the homestanding Golden Knights against the Washington Capitals. While the final result went in favor of the Capitals, most everything else has been a win in a short period of time. With success, even for venues, comes higher expectations. Now, the arena is using customer data in even greater ways, including how to determine how many staff is needed for specific events and to handle the always sticky situation of traffic in and around the facility. Purchase a ticket online and the venue can answer some of those questions from the purchaser’s data, including addresses from where the buyer will be coming. Yes, it is an example of technology at its finest and geared to make the guest experience a pleasurable and seamless one. Online activity has become one of the latest ways for such information to be gathered. Before, most data gathered on patrons arrived from trade publications or getting a guest to stand still for a moment to answer a few survey questions while at the venue. While those still exist to lesser extents, it is the online experience that drives more specific data today. Crowds at T-Mobile Arena are 70 percent tourists for most events, based on the ZIP codes of purchases. For other events, like Golden Knights games, the mix is 80 percent local — adding that many more cars to parking and traffic around the arena. That knowledge has helped reduce the time it takes to clear vehicle traffic from surrounding parking garages from 43 minutes to a more palatable 30 minutes. Inside, technology is king, and the arena does its part to give guests fast connections to do what most customers do these days when attending events — share the experience through social media with friends. Best for the venue is that those who use internet connection agree to allow data collection, another tool key for not only marketing but enabling T-Mobile Arena to be better equipped to serve and deliver. In all, the arena now has some 750 networking hardware devices that connects guests to the internet. It is but part of the new experience for both venue and guest, and one example of delivering customer service in a different way.

    The post T-Mobile Arena Takes Technology Forward to Better the Customer Experience appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    The San Diego City Council approved a partnership between the legendary and iconic San Diego Sports Arena’s management company, AEG Management SD, LLC, and Pechanga Resort Casino of Temecula, CA, for a new naming rights deal for the now Pechanga Arena San Diego. The venue, built in 1966 and able to hold up to 16,100 for certain events, was most recently named the Valley View Casino Center. The venue has hosted the biggest and the brightest throughout its famed history, including artists Jimi Hendrix, Elvis Presley, The Grateful Dead, KISS, Bee Gees, ABBA, Heart, The Scorpions, Van Halen, Dio, and hundreds more over recent years including Jason Aldean, Muse, Justin Bieber, Janet Jackson, Lana Del Rey, and Slayer. Its sports history is as equally famed as the current NBA Los Angeles Clippers once called the venue home as the San Diego Clippers. It has hosted boxing, track and field, World Team Tennis, WWE, soccer, hockey, lacrosse, indoor football, and more. The venue currently has three anchor sports tenants in the San Diego Gulls, San Diego Sockers, and San Diego Seals. “We have several partnerships with organizations that are synonymous with Southern California entertainment including the Lakers, the Angels, and Staples Center,” Pechanga Tribal Chairman Mark Macarro said in a statement. “Believe it or not, the San Diego Sports Arena is the closest major arena to Pechanga, so when they reached out to us, we were excited by the opportunity to partner with this historic venue.” “We are thrilled about this partnership with Pechanga Resort Casino,” added Ernie Hahn, senior vice president and general manager of AEG Management SD, LLC. “The Pechanga name and reputation carries a lot of weight in the entertainment industry. This partnership will afford us new opportunities and ensures that San Diego will continue to receive the best in premium entertainment and sporting events.” “Large-venue naming rights opportunities rarely avail themselves within the Southern California entertainment landscape,” said Jared Munoa, President of the Pechanga Development Corporation. “We’re very pleased to have been considered for this possibility. We think it’s a reflection of the Pechanga brand and the refinement it carries. A lot of San Diegans are familiar with Pechanga and who we are, and this partnership helps us strengthen that connection.” The five-year, $400,000-per-year deal gives the venue continued revenue for planned improvements. Branding for the arena was finished by December 21 and sets up an exciting 2019 with Justin Timberlake and Elton John already on the concert calendar.

    The post New Naming Rights Deal For Pechanga Arena San Diego appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    Welcome to 2019, a year that will continue the successes we have all collectively achieved recently. As CEO of the IAVM Foundation, we thought it important to get the new year started with a brief recap of what the capable Board of Trustees have been up to and their fund-raising strategies for the coming year. We finished 2019 with a successful program of offering CFP Semi Finals Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic tickets to our members and the general public. We surpassed our goal of $6,000 and generated approximately $7,600 in funds for the Foundation. The Foundation strategic plan is broken into four initiatives, and I want to focus this letter on one of those initiatives.  Our Fundraising Initiative of Venues donating has begun, and with a quick start, has raised $20,000 in less than two months work. The goal to reach prior to the end of the current Fiscal Year (March 31, 2019) is $60,000. Most of our venues have a budget for community investment; for example, purchasing fund raising banquets, sponsoring golf events, social clubs such as ROTARY, Kiwanis, etc. These donations are a sponsorship and raise funds for our young professionals, students, and IAVM professional development, which pays big dividends to the individual and the venue they work in, while creating a strong organization in the community they and the venue serve. Many of our professionals have been positively affected by the IAVM programs including Venue Management School, Venue Data Source, Diversity Leadership, 30|UNDER|30, UpStart, AVSS, SES, along with scholarships, internships, and Grants to attend important and relative professional development programs. Thank you to all who have donated, especially those who make recurring donations, you are making our industry stronger and paving the way for inclusiveness for the Association. Happy 2019!     Brad Mayne, CVE IAVM, President & CEO

    The post Happy 2019 – Foundation Friday Update appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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  • 01/11/19--09:02: ParkWhiz Rebrands as Arrive
  • ParkWhiz Inc. announced that it is rebranding as Arrive Inc., capping its transformation into the leading provider of solutions for the last mile of connected mobility. Arrive’s fully integrated platform helps companies and brands easily offer parking and other mobility-related services to drivers, fleets, and connected vehicles. Using app, voice and in-dash technology, Arrive’s branded and white-labeled solutions can surface convenient parking options and additional services to drivers at various touchpoints. Arrive powers hundreds of partner-branded experiences in addition to the highly-rated ParkWhiz and BestParking mobile apps, which have millions of active users across North America. “When we parked our first car in 2007, route planning and in-car connectivity services were luxuries. Today, these are essential components of consumer journeys, and we are excited to play an integral role in powering them,” said Yona Shtern, CEO and Executive Chairman of Arrive. “While our consumer brands are strong and gaining in popularity, we believe the future of parking lies within vehicles, navigation systems, and other touchpoints.” More than 40 million customers in 230 cities across the U.S. and Canada have access to the largest transactional parking network in North America through Arrive-powered parking reservations and drive-up, friction-free parking. Arrive provides transactional parking services for hundreds of partners within their own apps, websites, and emails. Arrive’s partnerships include professional sports teams and venues, events, travel providers, airlines, hotels, automotive OEMs, and navigation systems. “The Arrive brand represents the culmination of our evolution as a company into an enterprise business that powers the full range of mobility services in collaboration with and on behalf of our partners,” Shtern said. In April 2018, the company acquired Tel Aviv-based Codi Park and launched the Arrive Network, its powerful friction-free parking solution. Any driver using an Arrive-powered app or registered vehicle can experience seamless payments and frictionless entry and exit at participating lots and garages. The company recently completed its latest financing, raising $25 million in new equity funding from investors such as NewSpring Capital, Alate and Amazon’s Alexa Fund.

    The post ParkWhiz Rebrands as Arrive appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    In an age where the norm seems to be adding more and more seats and expansions run rampant, some renovations to Tropicana Field, home to Major League Baseball’s Tampa Bay Rays, reverses the seating capacity trend. The domed venue is undergoing a number of improvements and renovations designed to enhance the customer experience. For starters, a new social meeting area called the Left Field Ledge will arrive as a full-service bar with seated drink rails and ledge tables. That’s not all, as the playing surface will have new turf installed, LED lights will provide a brighter venue, and upgrades to two of the stadium’s entry gates are also scheduled. The team has pumped more than $50 million in renovations since 2005, including more than $15 million in just the past two years. Oh, about that seating arrangement. The venue’s capacity for baseball drops from 31,000 to 25,000 with the biggest change closing off the upper level. Just think of it akin to what performing arts venues and arenas are often able to do when making their facilities more intimate depending on the attendance. The team will hold a Fan Fest at the stadium on February 9 for season ticket holders to see the improvements and renovations at Tropicana Field in advance of the 2019 season. As for those who have season tickets in those upper levels, they will have the option to relocate to an upgraded location.

    The post Tropicana Field Puts the Squeeze on Seating Capacity appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    By Jennifer J. Douglass, CTA, Communications and Marketing Manager After an extensive nationwide search, Krystine St. Michael Bussiere, CMP, has been named Director of Sales & Marketing for the Baltimore Convention Center. Krystine will be responsible for leading a team of 14 who will be working with Baltimore’s hospitality partners to sell and service the Center. Prior to coming to the Center, Krystine was the National Sales Manager for the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Connecticut. There she focused on various market segments within the Washington, D.C., Maryland, and Virginia association markets. She was awarded the 2017 President’s Award from the Waterford Hotel and Venue Services/Hotel Group for her efforts in securing new business for the facility. Krystine is a dedicated member of the Chesapeake Chapter of PCMA, where she served as President of the Board in 2017. Krystine’s appointment as the Director of Sales & Marketing has brought her back to the place where she began her hospitality career. She began working at the Center 15 years ago after graduating from Towson University with a degree in Business Administration and Marketing. Krystine’s business acumen, strong sense of customer focus, and commitment to success were beneficial as she took on roles in management for convention services and sales within the organization. “Krystine’s experience in both sales and services gives her a unique perspective for this role. Having someone who understands the type of business that is a good fit for the City of Baltimore and has the hands-on experience in servicing events in the Center is invaluable. We are pleased to have her back in this leadership role”, said Peggy Daidakis, Executive Director for the Baltimore Convention Center. “I am thrilled to be back to serve in this important role. I have a real passion for the Baltimore Convention Center and the City of Baltimore. Our client experience, the development of our sales and services team, and the formation of meaningful industry partnerships are my cornerstone keys for success. My goal is to expand and broaden our reach as we build on our reputation industry wide,” Krystine said about her new role. Jennifer J. Douglass, CTA, is Communications and Marketing Manager of the Baltimore Convention Center.

    The post Krystine St. Michael Bussiere, CMP, Returns Home to Baltimore Convention Center appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    Jeff Nickler, general manager of Tulsa’s SMG-managed BOK Center for the past six years, has joined the Oak View Group in the position of senior vice president of the Arena Alliance, where he leads the efforts of 28 professional venues working together to increase special events as well as sponsorships. Before serving as GM at the BOK Center, Nickler was at the facility the previous five years in various capacities before earning promotions. In his new role, he works most closely with both National Hockey League and National Basketball Association venues to help drive business beyond their anchor tenants. BOK Center earned numerous industry accolades during Nickler’s tenure, especially as a major concert venue in a secondary marketplace. The most recent honor came in October when the International Entertainment Buyers Association (IEBA) selected the venue as its Arena of the Year. Now, Nickler looks to work much of the same magic in his new position.

    The post Long-time BOK Center GM Jeff Nickler Joins Oak View Group appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    Jam Productions Ltd. co-founder Arny Granat announced that he is departing the company, and co-founder Jerry Mickelson will continue to manage the daily operations. Granat will remain the CEO and Founder of Grand Slam Productions where he continues to explore new opportunities. “Over the past four decades, I have enjoyed a career that has allowed me to work with some of the biggest stars on the most memorable concerts, including the Rolling Stones, Adele, Prince and Frank Sinatra, as well as awe inspiring theater productions, and other unforgettable events,” Granat said. “I am looking forward to producing and promoting shows throughout the country in association with other partners and collaborators.” The legendary Granat is working on a number of projects with Outback Concerts and Jam Theatricals, which under Granat’s co-direction received a total of 10 Tony Awards® and managed subscription seasons in 27 cities. Granat is also producing a travelling circus featuring the famous wire walker Nik Wallenda; bringing a Christmas Light Show extravaganza from London to Chicago in 2019 before rolling it out nationally; and producing a movie based on the book, My Last Skirt. Granat is also writing a book, titled I Said This, But I Meant That. “I am happy where I’ve been, I am happy where I am, and I am excited for everyone to see where I go next,” Granat said.

    The post Jam Productions Ltd. Co-Founder Arny Granat Announces Departure appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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    SMG announced the appointment of Bob Sauter to general manager of Moscone Center in San Francisco. Sauter had been performing as acting general manager of the facility. “Bob is a long-term SMG and Moscone professional,” said SMG President/CEO Wes Westley. “He brings his years of experience to this role. He has done a fine job leading Moscone through its exciting expansion and I have every confidence that he will continue to put forward excellent results as Moscone begins its new era with the facility’s wonderful expansion in place.” “The City of San Francisco is delighted with the appointment of Bob Sauter as general manager,” added John Noguchi, director of convention facilities at City & County of San Francisco. “He has been a valuable partner for our industry and we appreciate the leadership he and SMG have demonstrated for over three decades of exemplary management here at the Moscone Center.”

    The post SMG Names Bob Sauter General Manager of Moscone Center appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.


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      The Academy for Venue Safety and Security welcomes Special Agent in Charge Aaron Rouse, Federal Bureau of Investigation, as the 2019 Opening Keynote.  Rouse will speak on one of the deadliest mass shooting incidents in the United States, the Route 91 Harvest Festival. “Having Special Agent in Charge Rouse as the opening keynote for AVSS is an honor,” stated Mark Herrera, IAVM Director of Education. “His discussion on the Route 91 Harvest Festival incident and the coordinated law enforcement response that ensued in the weeks to follow is something that all who work in our industry should hear.” Rouse began his career with the FBI in September 1996 and was first assigned to the Washington Field Office (WFO) where he worked violent crime and was on both the Joint Fugitive Task Force and the Violent Crime/Reactive squads.  During his tenure with the FBI, he has served as Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) in the Counterintelligence Division at FBIHQ, the senior liaison to the newly established Community HUMINT Coordination Center at CIA Headquarters, and Section Chief for the Clandestine Operations Section in the Counterintelligence Division at FBI Headquarters.  Currently, Rouse serves as Special Agent in Charge of the Las Vegas Division. “The lessons learned from Rouse regarding the Route 91 Harvest Festival investigation will help set the tone for the week of AVSS classes, exercises, and activities,” noted Herrera. “It is important that venues of all types, across all sectors, hosting events small or large, hear the message that Rouse will deliver at AVSS, so as to better plan, prepare, respond, and recover from tragic events such as Harvest 91.” AVSS will be held March 10-14, 2019 in San Diego, CA.  To learn more about AVSS or to register to attend, CLICK HERE.

    The post AVSS Speaker Spotlight – Special Agent in Charge Aaron C. Rouse, FBI appeared first on International Association of Venue Managers.