Day one of TheStadiumBusiness Summit received a fantastic reception and with no spare seats in the house there was an impressive buzz amongst the world’s leading stadium experts.

Ian Nuttall, Founder, welcomed delegates to the eighth annual meeting with the a tip of the hat to some countries that are being represented for the first time this year; Estonia, Uruguay and Guatemala to name a few. We’ve come a long way in eight years, but importantly, the heart of the gathering remains and an impressive group of individuals were here today to collectively decide the future of stadia.

From Big Data analytics to innovative pricing strategies, our world-class speaker line-up delivered a variety of fantastic presentations to a fill conference room of stadium experts.

Screen Shot 2016-06-01 at 17.53.32

Ana Morrillo Arroyo and José Sanchez shared their expertise in revenue management and innovative pricing strategies for the sporting industry

Kicking off the Summit, we welcomed Adam Pearson, Head of Commercial, Lancashire County Cricket Club and Paul Gordon, Trade Marketing Manager, Heineken about their strategic partnership to put the fan first.

Leveraging the power of sponsorship to increase matchday attendance and engagement we listened to why LCCC chose Heineken and what they are doing – together – to activate and maximise the return.

Shortly, after we had the pleasure of listening to the world renowned David Manica, Principal, MANICA Architecture about the design proposals of the San Diego’s new stadium, dubbed the ‘Convadium’. Mixing a stadium and convention centre is proving to be a breathtaking concept and with proposals at US$1.8bn, the Chargers are in for a state a of the art stadium which has the potential to be a benchmark for the industry for years to come.

During the lunch break our 300+ delegates networked in The Marketplace with the sponsors learning about all their latest product solutions helping to shape the future of the industry.

We heard from Peter Shaw, Tranmere Rovers, stating: “It really is very good here. I am not representing a huge Premier League club, and so of course, some of the solutions and ideas here are out of our financial reach, but we do have Premier League minds, and I can easily see how almost everything being presented today can be scaled down for me to take home. There are a lot of take aways from today.”

Screen Shot 2016-06-01 at 17.47.45

For the first time ever, we were joined by The London Cheerleaders in Madrid

Ana Morillo Arroyo, Global Strategic Pricing Director of Spain’s fast growing NH Hotel Group and José Sanchez, Corporate Director of Revenue Management, Parque Reunidos identified and delved into new ways in which venues can tap into exciting pricing strategies, such as dynamic pricing, helping organisations drive attendance and maximise yield per customer.

Ana shared her vision: ‘The future is pricing for me is: knowing my customer so well, that I know I can offer their hotel room for free because I am certain that they will make up that revenue elsewhere in my venue.”

Founder, Ian Nuttall, closed the day with his prediction of the future – drones. Not just in stadia, but these pint-sized flying machines will most certainly be playing a pivotal role in how we use our stadia, both by creating new events in the form of drone racing, but also in how we stream and connect with our customers. Met with an air of resistance world-wide, Ian advised a new mind-set: “let’s embrace and accept the drone. Rather than fearing the invasion of privacy they potentially represent, let’s get the systems in place to keep them on a leash.”

To show the lighter side of the drone, Ian introduced videos showing some incredible innovations that are being developed taking the technology (such as personal flying robots) to a level that until recently we reserved for science fiction.

Screen Shot 2016-06-01 at 17.51.25

Ron Velazquez presented a few lucky delegates with an exclusive Cleveland Cavaliers t-shirt during his presentation

As we draw to a close for the first day we reflect on the precedent that has been set, not just for this year’s edition, but for all future Summits. In addition, the noise surrounding the Awards ceremony tonight at the Santiago Bernabéu is only fueling the excitement in Madrid.

Winners will be announced over a private three-course meal on the pitch of Real Madrid’s iconic Santiago Bernabéu stadium. Check back tomorrow for the results.

What are people saying?

You guys did a great job. Really enjoyed the programming and hospitality.

Scott Jenkins General Manager, Mercedes-Benz Stadium

The best conference I've ever attended!

Lee Zeidman President, STAPLES Center

Congratulations on a fabulous event. You guys really go the extra mile!

Chris Salmon Commercial Director, SG Fleet

A delightful summit… There are great opportunities ahead.

Javier Martinez CEO, JMTZ

Another great Summit. We couldn't be more pleased with our participation.

Magnus Danielsson VP International, Feld Entertainment Motorsports