Football and rugby venue consortium, Stadium Experience, is marking its 15th anniversary this year, and reports adding eight new members so far in 2017.
Established in 2002, the not-for-profit organisation aims to promote and market stadium venues for conferences and events. Its activities include: sharing best practice and ideas, joint exhibitions opportunities, meeting event agents as a consortium, regular newsletters, an annual recognitions awards celebration; The Stadium Events & Hospitality Awards and more.
Back in 2002, Stadium Experience kicked off with just five football clubs deciding to work together and share ideas, with their first ever meeting held at Leeds United Football Club.
The original five clubs were: Aston Villa FC, Bolton Wanderers FC, Leeds United FC, Newcastle United FC, and Southampton FC.
In 2013, the association opened their doors to rugby venues for the very first time and now Stadium Experience’s membership totals 54 clubs across the UK and Ireland. Croke Park in Dublin, this year, was the first stadium in Ireland to sign up to the consortium.
Tottenham Hotspurs’ Terry Powell was the first chair of Stadium Experience and says: “What attracted me to the concept was the very open way the clubs shared their information with each other, how they tackled their own particular challenges from the corporate giants of clubs to the less gifted venues, equally adding value from their limited resources but doing it in a very professional manner.
“What I gained from each meeting was NEW knowledge and ideas that I could take and inject into our venue, increasing revenue and more importantly customer satisfaction.
“It is pleasing to now look back on the debates we had about expanding the membership to other types of venues, such as Rugby, and now witnessing the small group of forward thinkers being rewarded with the growth of the membership.”
Liverpool FC sales manager Collette Salmon is the current voluntary chair of Stadium Experience and says: “It’s truly amazing to see how a simple idea for five clubs to meet and share sales ideas 15 years ago, has grown into the Stadium Experience we see today. Our 54 members are proud to be working together to showcase stadia as venues for conferences and events. We’re thrilled to welcome eight new members so far this year, and look forward to seeing what the next 15 years brings.”