John Sharkey appointed Executive VP at SMG

John Sharkey, former Group CEO of the Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre in Glasgow, is to become Executive Vice-President, European Operations of SMG, global provider of management services to more than 230 public assembly facilities, including conference and exhibition centres.

SMG President & CEO, Wes Westley, announced that the appointment would be effective 6 October 2014.

Sharkey will assume responsibility for SMG’s business operations in Europe, as well as spearheading the business development ambitions for the Group in Europe and Asia.

Since leaving the SECC in April, Sharkey has advised some of the world’s largest private equity businesses to find value in this

Commenting on his appointment, Westley said: “I am delighted to welcome John to the team. He brings with him valuable experience and success across our core strengths as a business and an excellent understanding of the European marketplace. We look forward to realising the opportunities which lie ahead for the European business as part of a strong and successful worldwide brand”.

Sharkey said: “I have been privileged during my career with great opportunities and EVP European Operations carries on that succession. I am joining a business which has been on a growth curve through strong and weak economic cycles as a result of great strength and depth. I am especially delighted to be joining the European business at what can only be described as a very exciting time with the growth ambitions for the business”.

Reporting to John will be Arena General Managers, James Allen – Manchester UK; Ben Williams – Leeds UK; Paul Tappenden – Newcastle UK; Adriane Doyle – Belfast UK, as well as Colin Revel,Vice-President Special Projects UK; Michael Brill, Senior Vice-President New Business Development – Europe Continent, and Tracey Short, Vice-President, International Business Development Asia.

In the UK SMG manages Phones 4U Arena and the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester UK; the MetroRadio Arena in Newcastle, the First Direct Arena in Leeds UK, the York Barbican and the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, Northern Ireland, among other venues.

Speaking to CN, John Sharkey said: “I am delighted to be joining a fantastic company and working with the European and Asian business team to lead and develop the business in a marketplace which is in growth mode all over the place. Whilst entertainment is at the core of the European business it would also be great to see a confex balance similar to our US business as part of the portfolio, in due course, and we are definitely open for discussions”.

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Paul Colston


Paul Colston

Managing Editor, Conference News & Conference & Meetings World.

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