Esports Stadium Arlington (TX), the largest gaming and esports events facility in North America, celebrated its grand opening with FACEIT’s Esports Championship Series Season 6 Finals, a $750,000 prize pool tournament scheduled to coincide with Thanksgiving Weekend offering esports enthusiasts a new fan experience to complement the iconic football festivities of the season.
Located in the heart of Arlington’s entertainment district, Esports Stadium Arlington is a $10-million, 100,000 square-foot facility built to serve the unique and technologically advanced demands of the esports industry.
Designed by award-winning architectural firm Populous and brought to life with build partner Shawmut Design and Construction, the stadium features a competition space with a built-in 85 feet-long LED wall that’s accompanied by an immersive sound and theatrical lighting system.
“We applied 35 years of creating event venues to bring Esports Stadium Arlington to life, and it will undoubtedly be the place where people will love to gather for esports events,” said Populous Senior Principal Brian Mirakian. “The energy in the venue, being able to feel the excitement and pulse of the game and having the ability to powerfully connect players and fans signifies a new era for esports.”
A first-of-its-kind production facility equipped with Grass Valley systems will power event broadcasts, complete with a dedicated observer room, caster studio, data center, and control room. Players will be able to stay on top of their game by utilizing the dedicated Team Area which includes eight “Team Rooms,“ a space for players to strategize and practice, a “Player Lounge“ where players can relax and socialize as well as spaces created specifically for media and staff.
Esports Stadium Arlington’s flexibility gives it the ability to cater to a wide variety of audiences and event types. By
transforming previously underutilized space of the Arlington Convention Center, Esports Stadium Arlington also showcases the adaptive re-use potential of esports. The planned stadium will feature a major competition event space, gaming, retail, and social spaces, VIP hospitality, a broadcast studio, and team training areas.
“With Esports Stadium Arlington, we have positioned ourselves as both a national and international leader in the emerging esports industry,” said Arlington Mayor Jeff Williams. “I can’t wait for people to see this state-of-the-art facility, the largest and most flexible esports stadium in the country. The opportunity to provide jobs combined with growing tourism is phenomenal.”
“We are extremely excited to have partnered with an amazing city such as Arlington that shares our vision of building a foundation for growth in the competitive gaming ecosystem,” added Jonathon Oudthone, president of NGAGE Esports. “By working with FACEIT to host the ECS Season 6 Finals as our inaugural event, we will be able to show the world that our facility truly is one of a kind.”
AudienceView announced the appointment of Lawrence Franco as Chief Operating Officer.
Franco brings more than 25 years of experience in B2B solutions with leading organizations to AudienceView. In his new role, he will activate the strategies for AudienceView’s growing global operations. Franco also has responsibility for day-to-day management of customer success, engineering and sales as well as AudienceView’s media division, which includes TheaterMania and WhatsOnStage.
He joins AudienceView from his role as President, North America of Global Knowledge, a worldwide leader in IT and professional training. Franco’s background also includes executive-level roles with a variety of software and insights organizations, including Teranet and Dun & Bradstreet.
“Lawrence is a highly experienced operations executive with an impressive track record established over more than two decades in the technology sector,” said Mark Fowlie, CEO for AudienceView. “His proven ability to develop leadership across departments in global organizations will be invaluable in our ongoing commitment to our customers and their success.”
“I am extremely excited to join AudienceView and build on the incredible momentum that the company has created,” Franco said. “I look forward to working with our talented team to capitalize on our deep technical and industry expertise to drive further efficiencies, support our customers in meeting their individual business goals, and further AudienceView’s growth objectives.”
The Los Angeles Convention Center (LACC), owned by the City of Los Angeles and managed by AEG Facilities, announced the appointment of Shaun Davis, CVP, as the new vice president of operations and Ben Zarhoud, CPA, as the new vice president of finance.
Davis joins the LACC from Salt Lake City, Utah, with more than 20 years of operations management experience. He most recently served at the Mountain America Expo managed by SMG where he managed and directed all operations and previously worked as a senior business analyst at IPA, Energy Solutions Arena, Smiths Ballpark and R.B. Davis & Co.
Zarhoud is local to Los Angeles with more than 13 years of experience in accounting and financial management. He recently served as senior director of finance at AXS, senior manager of finance at AEG and six years at Deloitte.
“I am excited to welcome both Shaun and Ben to the LACC executive team,” said Ellen Schwartz, general manager at the LACC. “I am confident their skills and experience will be outstanding additions to our facility.”
A total of $1.1 billion in regional impact was generated into the San Diego economy as a direct result of conventions, meeting and events held at your San Diego Convention Center from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018.
The Convention Center’s Fiscal Year 2018 annual report is out, and shows that the venue is delivering on its purpose: to serve as the region’s premier gathering place, hosting conventions, trade shows and community events that economically benefit the City of San Diego and advances our convention and tourism industry.
A total of 785,460 attendees contributed $651 million in direct spending as a result of the 133 events that were held at the Convention Center. A total of $24.7 million in hotel and sales tax revenues were generated directly benefiting the City of San Diego’s general fund.
Of the total 133 events, 13 were medical meetings, the core business of the Convention Center. Seven of those meetings landed in the year’s top 10 economic generators. Comic-Con International sits at the top of the list, contributing $147 million alone over the four days it was hosted during FY18.
“Your San Diego Convention Center helps drive business to local retailers, attractions, restaurants, hotels and special event venues,” said San Diego Convention Center President & CEO Rip Rippetoe, CVE. “Our job is to host events and bring people to San Diego – events that produce a ripple effect into the economy that reaches across the county. Our promise is to provide outstanding customer service, exceeding expectations, so that our customers will want to come back over and over again, further investing in San Diego.”
Rippetoe likes to say that each week we build – or help facilitate the building of – “small cities” for the most important week of our customer’s year. Visitors come to our destination to learn, connect and create, then they take their tourism dollars out into the destination.
“The more tourists we have in San Diego, the more sales tax and tourism occupancy tax dollars are generated, which benefit our city and our region,” Rippetoe said.
The Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena (JVMA) marks its 15-year anniversary and announced plans to celebrate the milestone with a series of special events and contests.
The JVMA replaced the Veterans Memorial Coliseum, which was the city’s primary concert venue. The doors opened for its first performance on November 21, 2003 with Elton John. Since then, more than 7.2 million patrons have attended 1,607 events. JVMA has presented an impressive 77 sold out concerts in its 15 year history.
One of the contests planned for the year-long celebration is the “15 for 15” Contest. JVMA will be announcing monthly ticket giveaways on social media for 15 of the hottest events of the year including Cher, P!NK, Blake Shelton, Elton John, KISS, Twenty One Pilots, and New Kids on the Block, with more events to be announced throughout the year.
“This 15 year milestone will be a celebration of the past, the present, and the future of Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena,” said Bill McConnell, general manager of SMG Jacksonville. “Over the past decade and a half, Jacksonville’s most iconic sports, music, and entertainment venue has been a home of great pride for the people of Jacksonville. Since its opening, the arena has hosted world class artists and events and the best is yet to come. We want to celebrate the wonderful memories that have been made under this roof and look forward to historic new milestones beginning in 2019, made possible by the tremendous community support for entertainment and sports here in Jacksonville.”