Smart City Networks announced that AEG at the Los Angeles Convention Center (LACC) extended its contract with the company for an additional three years. The contract extension will allow Smart City to provide the necessary upgrades to prepare the venue for future technology.
“Our continued partnership with Smart City enables the LACC to bring the best technology services to our clients and guests, and establishes the facility as a premier event destination,” said Ellen Schwartz, AEG General Manager at the LACC.
The contract extension includes an upgrade to the networking capabilities by Smart City including upgrading the LACC’s wireless infrastructure. The exhibit halls will be updated with new Wi-Fi 5 access points, with significantly increased density. All other areas of the facility will benefit from further Wi-Fi density. Added to this, a new Cisco Wireless LAN controller and it all equals more density, better speeds, and the ability to support more than 375 percent more devices than before the upgrade.
“Over the past five years AEG and L.A. Tourism has increased the number of technology-driven events booked at the facility,” said Julia Slocombe, Vice President of Western Operations at Smart City Networks. “This upgrade and our continued partnership with AEG will position LACC to attract new tech-heavy events to downtown Los Angeles.”
Smart City has served as the convention center’s technology and telecommunications provider since 1988. Since then, the facility’s technology needs have changed dramatically, and Smart City has adapted with them. This extension will allow them to continue this long-running partnership and keep providing the LACC with superior cutting-edge technologies.
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The cashless experience is fully underway at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
The occasion for the debut was Atlanta United’s season-opening soccer match against FC Cincinnati. In becoming the first NFL and Major League Soccer facility to utilize the cashless transaction model, the venue expects the move to not only allow the stadium to adjust prices on F&B choices with greater frequency, but to save guests time as well.
Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium has reported a “very smooth” transition to a fully cashless experience, despite stating that less than one per cent of attendees at Sunday’s opening event utilised new reverse ATM machines installed in the venue.
AMB Sports + Entertainment operates the stadium and installed 10 reverse ATM machines located on each level to enable guests to deposit up to $1,000 in cash for use on a universal debit card from Visa that can be used inside and outside the facility.
The venture marks the latest effort by AMB Sports + Entertainment (AMBSE) – operator of the stadium, United and NFL team the Atlanta Falcons – to enhance the fan experience at the venue. AMBSE installed 10 reverse ATM machines on each level of the stadium, allowing fans to deposit up to $1,000 (£759/€885) in cash for use on a universal debit card from Visa, both inside or outside the stadium.
AMBSE spokesperson Heather Sautter told the Atlanta Business Chronicle that while the machines were used by less than one percent of the 70,000-plus crowd at Sunday’s game, the move to card and mobile-only payments “went very smoothly,” and that officials “are pleased with the progress.” Sautter added that the number of transactions before and during the match were in direct line with average numbers from last season.
Spectra by Comcast Spectacor announced the appointment of Damian Bush as the Managing Director for Global Spectrum Asia, Spectra’s Singapore affiliate.
Bush brings more than 20 years of leadership experience and knowledge of the events industry. He possesses an excellent track record of stakeholder management at business, government, royal and military levels, and an extensive practical background in planning and provision of events across a variety of venues previously in the UK and now in Singapore.
Prior to Singapore, Bush worked on the London 2012 Summer Olympics as the Venue General Manager, and held positions with Opex Exhibition Services, Earls Court and Olympia London and Alexandra Palace and Park. Before being appointed as Managing Director, he headed up the Venues and Events Management department at the Singapore Sports Hub as Senior Director for six years and oversaw all the Hub’s venues including the state-of-the-art 55,000-seat National Stadium which has hosted a multitude of
international sporting events such as the World Rugby 7’s, International Champions Cup, Super Rugby, International Football Games, along with Athletics and family entertainment events such as Monster Jam as well as mega concerts such as Cold Play, Madonna, Jay Chou, Foo Fighters, One Direction, BTS and many more.
With full responsibility for the leadership and development of Global Spectrum Asia, Bush will play a key role in overseeing the management and delivery of the company’s business operations in Singapore.
“Damian’s grasp of the fast-moving daily operations, the breadth of onsite facilities, and the long-term vision for the Hub positioned him as the ideal candidate to assume the Managing Director role,” Michael Ahearn, Spectra’s Senior Vice President of Operations, said. “Damian is deeply invested in the growth of the property, and I’m eager to see where he takes these world-class facilities next.”
“There is a tremendous prospect for the Hub to grow further, to enhance the service delivery and to capitalize on the growth opportunities presented by thriving markets in this region,” Bush said. “I am excited to be on board and part of the great team to take these to the next level.”
By Barbara Cosio Moreno
The San Diego Convention Center is modernizing its approach to signage solutions for meetings, conventions, and events.
Digital Conventions, LLC, has been selected as the Convention Center’s official in-house service provider for digital signage. This new amenity will allow event organizers, advertisers, and sponsors to have a “turn-key approach” to High-Definition video advertising, wayfinding and announcements.
The Convention Center’s Board of Directors voted to move forward with the partnership in October of 2018. The five-year agreement took effect on January 7, 2019. The signage is scheduled to be up and running by summer of 2019.
“This new partnership is just one more way we are improving the customer and guest experience at the San Diego Convention Center,” said Clifford “Rip” Rippetoe, CVE, President & CEO of the San Diego Convention Center Corporation. “Our purpose is to serve as the region’s premier gathering place, hosting trade shows, conventions, and meetings that generate economic impact for the San Diego region. Digital signage is something our customers and guests expect from us. It also meets our needs by serving as a new revenue stream for our facility.”
The digital signage, which is slated to begin installation this spring, allows the San Diego Convention Center the opportunity to replace static signage, including banners, overhangs, and poster boards, with a modern, visually appealing, real-time messaging platform. Meeting planners can reach customers through a platform that is engaging and customizable in high-traffic areas. Digital signage also improves the Center’s sustainability by cutting down on waste generated from paper and print signs.
Digital Conventions, LLC has been providing signage for the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C. since 2010. Because of that, they have worked with more than half of the meeting planners who have events contracted at the San Diego Convention Center through 2022.
“We are very excited to implement a landmark integrated digital signage program at the San Diego Convention Center,” said St. Elmo Crawford, President, Digital Conventions. “Our partnership will provide event organizers, sponsors, and advertisers new opportunities to inform and engage event attendees and guests. We are looking to create a truly immersive event attendee experience that will continue to raise the bar for digital signage within the conference and events industry.”
The signage plan will include both static and portable LED videowalls. The main signage displays and will be located in four of the lower lobbies of the facility.
Barbara Cosio Moreno is Executive Director, Communications & Outreach at San Diego Convention Center Corporation.
For the full press release, click here.
After 19 years, Tery Howard has stepped down from her role as Senior Vice President/Chief Technology Officer of the Miami Dolphins and Hard Rock Stadium, but before leaving took home a big honor in being named Executive of the Year in the Stadium Business Awards 2018, which recognizes leadership, innovation, and achievement in the delivery, operation, and management of sports facilities globally.
Howard was recently announced to the board of directors of Venuetize, a technology platform for smart space solutions.
“Tery’s tenure as a forward-thinking technology executive will be an enormous asset to Venuetize, and we are thrilled to add her to our Board of Directors,” said Jon Romm, Venuetize CEO and Chairman of the Board, in a prepared release. “Her experience and perspective will help us to continue to navigate market dynamics and position our mobile engagement platform for the future.”
In her previous role, she was responsible for managing and directing the technology initiatives and strategic direction of business operations. Under her leadership, Howard has been recognized by SportsBusiness Journal as a Game Changer in Sports for her innovation and impact to the industry. During her tenure, the Dolphins were recognized by InfoWorld as one of the “Top 100” companies that have made the best use of technology to enhance their business, and also recognized by PC Magazine as one of the “Top 10” companies using technology in intelligent ways to improve their business. Having recently launched Peer Vision Consulting, Howard is now advising organizations on the business and technology strategy for sports and in venue operations.
“After five years as a Venuetize customer with the Dolphins, I am excited to work with the company in a new capacity,” Howard said. “The company is at the forefront of a technology movement that is completely innovating the venue experience. I look forward to being involved in this next phase of Venuetize’s growth and success.”