Tag Archives: Paciolan

Ottawa Partners with Aramark; Paciolan Integrates Purdue and Florida St. with StubHub; Centerplate Retools Bi-Lo Center Deal

11 Sep

Rendering of the Ottawa (Ontario) Convention Centre

Ottawa (Ontario) Convention Centre

Full Services Provider: Aramark

Date: Sept. 8, 2010

Terms: The 15-year deal is traditional in that it involves a percentage of the gross and an investment by Aramark. It’s non-traditional in that it is “seamless,” offering clients a one-stop shop branded Ottawa Convention Centre, rather than dealing with various and multiple providers and contracts. Aramark will coordinate all event services, including catering, retail food and beverage and set up. Jennifer McCrary will serve as general manager of the Ottawa Convention Centre for Aramark.

The $180 million Ottawa Convention Centre opens in April 2011. Paul Keough, senior VP, redevelopment and client services, said the Ottawa Convention Centre management staff used focus groups and facility tours to vet the best way to handle the concessions contract. It became clear, he said, that “clients just want a simple way to use the facility, with no hidden costs and no surprises. They do not want to be ping-ponged about, making more than the necessary handshakes.”

The most successful convention center operations they saw in North America and Europe were those that had a seamless relationship with service providers. The Ottawa Convention Centre will be that type of operation. The name Aramark will not be on the cups and contracts. It will all be the Ottawa Convention Centre and McCrary, an Aramark employee, is titled general manager for facilities for the center. The OCC person will be the Aramark person.

“It’s not just food and beverage; it’s delivery of services,” he emphasized.

The convention center will do a projected 700-900 events annually, grossing $25 million in total revenue, including food and beverage, rental and ancillaries, Keough said.

Aramark’s Dan Smith said McCrary moved to Ottawa from their Palm Beach (Fla.) Convention Center operation. She will coordinate all event services, from managing catering and retail food to overseeing plant management, including engineering and mechanical maintenance, housekeeping and grounds.

Aramark also will be responsible for cleaning the facility’s exterior windows, consisting of 1,045 triangular window panes.

Interviewed for this story: Paul Keough, (613) 563-1984; Dan Smith, (215) 409-7403

Paciolan and StubHub

Clients: Purdue and Florida State

Date: Aug. 30

Terms: Paciolan has signed an agreement with secondary ticket marketplace StubHub to enable fans to buy and digitally resell tickets to games at Purdue in West Lafayette, Ind, and Florida State in Tallahassee.

The deal allows season-ticket holders to digitally list and sell their tickets on StubHub, while buyers can easily purchase tickets and print them at home, all digitally. The deal is the first of its kind for both companies and is similar to a StubHub deal in place for Major League Baseball, which Paciolan facilitates for both the Colorado Rockies and the Philadelphia Phillies.

“StubHub is a great partner for this deal because they have won the consumer wars,” said Kim Damron, VP of Client Partners. “Each year they spend millions and millions on advertising in the college market.”

Paciolan Founder Jane Kleinberger said both Purdue and Florida State approached her about piloting the program after she announced the partnership at a recent PacNet user conference. Paciolan expects to add two more schools by the time basketball begins. Kleinberger said the partnership allows buyers to purchase tickets without worrying about fraud, while box offices are better equipped to deal with tickets that are purchased through StubHub and can provide better customer service.

“We’ve definitely been in the college market for a long time in terms of college partnerships,” said Danielle Maged, head of Partnerships and Business Development for StubHub. “We now have 18 college partners. We’ve had the University of Southern California for a number of years, and Alabama (too).”

StubHub often lists tickets below face value for basketball and baseball, but Maged said that’s not necessarily the case for large conference football.

“On the college front it matters what the record is, how far along the season is and opponent,” she said. “Just from the naked eye, I haven’t seen a ton of listings below face value.”

Interviewed for this article: Jane Kleinberger and Kim Damron, (866) 722-4526; Danielle Maged, (415)222-8412

Bi-Lo Center, Greenville, S.C., and Charter Amphitheatre, Simpsonville, S.C.

Management: Greenville Arena District

Concessionaire: Centerplate

Terms: The Greenville Arena District (GAD) assumed management from Centerplate, effective Sept. 1. GAD owns the 15,000-seat Bi-Lo Center and manages Charter Amphitheater at Heritage Park. Centerplate will continue to provide food and beverage service at Bi-Lo Center through an extension of its existing contract for 10 years from this year (2020) and will expand that concessions agreement to include the Charter Amphitheater in Heritage Park, which has 3,500 fixed seats and 11,700 lawn seats.

Roger Newton, general manager of Bi-Lo Center, said that in the transition from Centerplate management to GAD “all staff was rehired. Everyone is staying.”

GAD owns the Bi-Lo Center. The board is appointed by the state. Originally, under the management agreement with Centerplate, Centerplate was the backstop for the bonds that built Bi-Lo Center. When the Greenville Grrrowl hockey team left the building four years ago, those bonds, though paid, were technically in default because Centerplate was no longer obligated to be the backstop.

Now, everything is back on track, Newton said, including addition of a new hockey team, the Greenville Road Warriors of the ECHL. That team, formerly the Johnstown (Pa.) Chiefs, begin play at Bi-Lo Center this season.

GAD bought Centerplate’s management contract for $2.5 million, Newton confirmed. Centerplate had been paid $1 million a year in management fees. That contract was due to expire in September 2013.

The concessions side is a percentage deal. Centerplate now pays 35 percent of the gross, down from 40 points before.

Centerplate also added the Charter Amphitheater to its venues. It had been a Premier Events food contract. GAD took over the venue from SMG in February and has booked eight shows this season. Newton said it will probably end the year with 50,000 attendance. Per caps on concessions have been as high as $18 and average about $8, he said. The city added a VIP tent area this year, which offers an upscale menu and liquor and drinks.

Centerplate’s Bob Pascal said the deal is a good one for the concessionaire, extending the company’s presence in Greenville. It does not portend an exit from venue management for Centerplate, he said. Each deal is case by case. — Linda Deckard and Dave Brooks

Interviewed for this story: Roger Newton, (864) 250-4917; Bob Pascal, (203) 975-5943

Cardinals Cash Creates Cuisine Currency

23 Aug

The St. Louis Cardinals have become the third major league baseball team to utilize stored value ticketing through Tickets.com.

Named Card Cash, the program allows fans to assign value to the bar codes of tickets, which can be redeemed for food, beverage and merchandise purchases. The program utilizes Tickets.com’s UpTix software, and can be used by fans who want to add food to tickets they give to their guests, or by teams as a promotion.

On July 31, the Cardinals held a pre-game ceremony in honor of former Hall of Fame Manager Whitey Herzog, whose number 24 was being retired. Ticketholders for every seat number 24 throughout the ballpark received $5 in Cards Cash added to their ticket. Each person seated in section 240 also received $5 in Card Cash, and a $5 bonus for each strikeout thrown in the third-inning (there was one). The team estimated that 75 percent of ticket holders that received “24” themed Card Cash spent all or part of their winnings that day.

“It’s a good tool to drive per caps, they get prepaid revenue and they get lift from having prepaid tickets,” said John Rizzi SVP of Product Management and Strategy for Tickets.com.

All of the POS systems at Busch Stadium in St. Louis accept Card Cash as a form of payment, along with the team store. The system can detail which fans from which sections purchased concessions from specific food stations, creating never seen before geolocational data.

The Houston Astros utilize a stored value system on the Ticketmaster platform, and the Philadelphia Phillies run a similar program on Paciolan. The San Francisco Giants and the Oakland Athletics — both Tickets.com clients — also use UpTix.

“Rather than using discounts to move tickets, we’ve found it is a great way to add value” to distressed inventory, said Steve Fanelli, the team’s director of ticketing.

The team rolled out the platform this season, replacing its $35 all-you-can-eat section with a $6 ticket that came preloaded with $6 worth of food, priced at $12. The 990-seat section typically moves 650-700 seats per game, Fanelli said. The section has a value menu with $5 beer and $4 pulled pork sandwiches.

UpTix has also helped with some group sales, and the team hopes to roll out the program for season tickets next season.

Oakland also puts an expiration date on unspent value in the gift card, but Fanelli said the goal isn’t to keep unspent money, known as breakage, but to encourage people to spend more than the card’s value, a practice known as lift. — Dave Brooks

Interviewed for this article: John Rizzi, (714) 327-5469; Steve Fanelli, (510) 563-2270

Green Seals The Deal For Centerplate At Niagara, GetTix Switches To Veritix

30 Jul

Rendering of the proposed Niagara Convention & Civic Center in Niagara Falls, Ontario

Venue: Niagara Convention & Civic Centre, Niagara Falls, Ontario

Concessionaire: Centerplate

Deal: Five years with a five-year renewal option, percentage-of-the-gross contract. There is no investment on Centerplate’s part.

Comments: Green was the color of the game when the private management company for the venue, Niagara Convention & Civic Centre selected Centerplate, said Kerry Painter, venue president and general manager. “Centerplate has a strong presence in the convention center industry and recognizes the needs of our conventioneers,” she said.

But most importantly, they grasped the culture of Niagara and the emphasis on green and locally grown. In fact, the convention center will have a Kitchen Garden located across the street on land donated by the monastery there. It will be designed by the university, which is combining its horticulture students with chef, kitchen and culinary students to come up with a kitchen garden that is sustainable.

Centerplate jumped on the idea, and enhanced it with its own programs, such as buying meat and produce within a 100-mile radius as much as possible and working with the 90 local wineries, she said.

The 280,000 sq. ft., $100 million convention center will open April 8, 2011, Painter said. It also includes a 1,000-seat theater. Centerplate will staff a cafe, a permanent concessions stand and lots of portables.

In the last six months, Painter has contracted most of the services, including AVW Telus for audio visual; Showtech for electric; and Strongco as decorator. On her list of outstanding items is a security firm. She hopes to have one on board in the next two or three months.

Interviewed for this story: Kerry Painter, (905) 357-6222

Company: GetTix.Net

New BackEnd Provider: Veritix

Changeover Date: Aug. 8.

Deal: Five years. Veritix will provide the backend platform for GetTix.net, a full service provider.

Comments: Veritix replaced Paciolan. Charlotte Allison, vice president of business development for GetTix.net, cited flexibility, including pick-a-seat rather than best-available technology, which flows over not only online but to kiosks, using the same type of environment, as reasons the company chose Veritix. “We actually have several clients interested in coming with GetTix and that was one element they wanted,” she said.

“Also, promotionally there is a lot of flexibility – you can up-sell. A new salesman can be selling for the first time in under five minutes because it is a Windows environment, point and click,” she said. “That’s what wowed us.”

Veritix President Jeff Kline said the regional ticketing business has been good to his company. Last year, the firm inked a deal with ArtTix, a Salt Lake City firm that powers the Utah Jazz basketball team.

“It’s good business for us. They have multiple locations and have the ability to grow their platform and expand their reach,” he said, later adding. “It’s a well known organization and takes advantage of the Veritix platform, so for us, it was a good fit.”

GetTix was founded in 2004 as an arm of Global Entertainment Corp. (GEC), a public company, which also manages venues under its Encore Facility Management arm; sells sponsorships (GEMS-Global Entertainment Marketing Systems); owns the Western Professional Hockey League, dba CHL (Central Hockey League); operates a construction arm, ICC (International Coliseums Company), and a food service, GEC Food Service, LLC.

Allison was brought in a year ago to secure additional ticketing contracts outside of Encore-managed buildings. GetTix has contracts with Encore-managed Allen (Texas) Events Center; Independence (Mo.) Center; and Tim’s Toyota Center, Prescott Valley, Ariz. They will also handle the Dodge City Events Center when it comes on line in February 2011. “We use the building as a hub and develop around that market. You build it as you go,” Allison said.

The newest client for GetTix.net is Brand.Live, a marketing firm out of Vancouver, B.C., which produces festivals. The new alliance brings Veritix its first international client, Allison said.

GetTix clients outside the GEC family include the Yavapai County Fairgrounds in Prescott Valley, Ariz.; the town of Addison, Texas; a promoter partner, Rozone Productions, in Austin; Austin Turf Cats of the Indoor Football League; Claremore (Okla.) Expo Center; El Rey Theater in Albuquerque, N.M.; Star Shuttle and Charter, Austin; Checkered Flag Productions; and Dodge City (Kan.) Raceway

Growth for GetTix.net is in the mid-size markets, Allison said, adding they are definitely expanding more in the venue space. “Canada is the great frontier.”

It took a year to do the deal with Veritix, she added. There were a lot of parameters to discuss, she said. — Linda Deckard

Interviewed for this story: Charlotte Allison, (214) 341-2495, Jeff Kline, (216) 466-8055