NEC targets Europe as Council moves on casino development

Genting Casinos and the NEC Group
have issued a statement welcoming the “decision made at the Solihull
Metropolitan Borough Council Planning Committee meeting on Wednesday
evening (14 March 2012)”, effectively greenlighting to the next planning
stage the project to put a casino at the heart of a destination
development at the NEC. The project includes a new conference centre and

“Genting Casinos now looks forward to the next stage of the planning application process for Resorts World at the NEC and then to begin the process, with the support of the NEC Group, to deliver this exciting leisure and entertainment complex,” the statement concluded.

The NEC Group has also announced it is expanding its international activities, with a push on the European market as top priority.

NEC Group International, a new division headed by Koen Melis, a major player in the worldwide entertainment arena, has been set up to develop a number of European opportunities in the conference, arenas, stadiums and exhibitions market.

Prior to the formal set up of the new division, The NEC Group has been trying to make the most of its position in the global marketplace by offering consultancy,including in the planning stages of Lyon’s Villeurbanne Arena, Rome’s Citta Dello Sport and Derby’s Multi-purpose Arena. These are in addition to the management contract for the Convention Centre Dublin, which opened in September 2010.

The Group has also consulted on international venue projects including Asia-World Expo in HongKong, which opened in 2005; The Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Centre in Reykjavik, which opened last year; Nottingham Conference Centre, part of The University of Nottingham Trent; and on developing an Operations Manual for the Konstantinovsky Congress Centre, St Petersburg.

Koen Melis, says: “For over 35 years, the NEC Group has brought many of the world’s best loved shows, greatest live entertainment and some of the most important business events to its venues, and has a wealth of experience in maximising the commercial opportunities for clients and the actual venues.

“Recently created successful partnerships have brought in international names like LGElectronics, following a £29m, redevelopment in 2009 that saw the NEC Arena become the LG Arena; Genting as partner for £120m leisure and entertainment complex on the NEC site; and, announced 1 March, a five-year partnership with Barclaycard, which includes a title sponsorship deal for the NIA, Birmingham, unlocking the £20.6m refurbishment funding and payment partner of The Ticket Factory, LG Arena, NEC and The NIA.”

The NEC Group runs four world-class venues: the National Exhibition Centre; the International Convention Centre; the National Indoor Arena; and the LG Arena.  Combined, they host a diverse range of over 900 events every year, attracting 4.1m visitors to the West Midlands region. In addition to the venues the Group also operates a national ticketing agency, The Ticket Factory, and an award winning prestige caterer, Amadeus. In addition the management contract for the Convention Centre Dublin, which celebrated its first anniversary in September 2011.

Together, this equates to over £2bn of economic impact and supports the equivalent of 29,000 full-time jobs for the West Midlands every year.

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Paul Colston


Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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