Sports clubs must have a common goal to make their homes into commercial fortresses. So says Mick Gallagher, who after 32 years in local government, has now joined forces with two other businessmen with sporting connections to found a stadium and arena consultancy.
Gallagher said: “Football, rugby, and cricket clubs all need to maximise their stadium facilities to increase their income and then reinvest to bring success both on and off the field. For some that means improving their facilities, developing their commercial operations, and staying at home – but others will need to take the plunge and move.
“Matches last from 90 minutes to a few hours in different sports but all clubs need a stadium that works for them around the clock. They may discover their ground is in the wrong location or has limitations that will always hold them back. Some don’t have the financial scope to move right now but the ultimate choice is whether to go forward or fall behind. Standing still isn’t an option.”
Speaking of his new partnership with former Leicester City Plc Chief Executive Barrie Pierpoint and Charles Rayner, ex-Director of Operations during Coventry City’s GBP£113m Ricoh Arena project, Gallagher added: “Between the three of us, we have been involved in new stadia at both Leicester City and Coventry City, and have learned from mistakes as well as successes.
“The one all-important piece of advice I’d offer is that there’s a need for someone to oversee the whole operation from concept to completion. We have the experience, contacts, sheer enthusiasm and drive to do just that.”
Gallagher, who worked for local authorities in Leicester, Boston, North Ayrshire, Kingston-on-Thames, and Reading, also highlighted the importance of the relationship between sports clubs and local councils in making things happen: “Very often the last people a club contacts is the local council when it really should be the first. It can save a lot of lost time and wasted effort and resources by going down the wrong road. Local authorities now recognise more than ever the positive way in which people associate towns and cities with their sports clubs. Their success, prosperity and local pride is very strongly linked.”
For further information on Stadia and Arena Consultancy UK’s services, contact Barrie Pierpoint on tel: +44 (0) 7720 406806 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org