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Read this: Media Masters - Alex Hill

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Media Masters - Alex Hill…



Media Masters with Paul Blanchard

welcome to media Masters series of one-to-one interviews with people at the top of the league in the president of AEG Europe Alex Hill starting his career as an assistant manager at KPMG the 90s he went on to financial director roles at flextech television and fremantlemedia before joining aging in 2007 the company owns manages or consults with some of the biggest venues in Europe including as president he obviously a range of interests across 9 countries including ownership of sports teams and live performances Alex thank you Demi thank you for having me like a lot of responsibility that pretty fairies and that makes it really cool really exciting thing I like about it fortunately.

There's a lot of great people working there that are overseeing a lot of those functions, so it makes my job easier.

Is it like during Maguire then when you constantly banging the table saying show me the money absolutely not I need a bit more team-based than that and and collaborative.

Delete it, so but it is really very there's a lot going on and make sure it an interesting week.

So what do you do with them? What is a typical week for typical week as hard, put it varies and you know because we do work across Europe will be times when I'm visiting our sites in in various countries generally be Stockholm Berlin and Paris or based in London so it could be working across off and use it could be working in our touring promoting business and we could be at a new real estate deal and we also look after the Thames Clippers here in London so sometimes we could be I could be working on you both business case for the Thames Clippers to take down that route and how much of it.

Are you involved creatively because obviously I've got the estate management and all the staff in you got a lot of responsibility, but how do you how do you integrate the creative approach to your day today?

It is a lot of creativity in the company in terms of the customer experience and help people enjoy and events and the people out the venues and the creativity that they do the ring is a hell of a lot of creativity in terms of promoter division and how to put on an amazing festival or a great or fortunate people are relying on my creativity to help in that process so I think you might more my role is to provide the support deliver the great resource around the company.

There is an and deliver a really great product for everyone and that involves bringing the right creative people in in during that process as well as your the procedural people and and how it all brings in together.

Are you the platform of a financial stability than that the creativity is based on because you wouldn't want on the checkbook to the created you probably be a business within.

Yeah, I mean we're profit making company at the end of the day and then there's a healthy balance in that we want to make sure that we deliver the best experiences for our fans a g is all about the experience business and the world we live in at the moment is very much chef and experience based economy and you have to deliver an experience for a fan or client or a customer that is really going to cut through in this day and age so you have to have innovation creativity within that process but at the end of the day.

It's something that's gonna economically work as well and you go to everything I was thinking this is what a busy period at the O2 Arena the one you got a tennis Liam Gallagher the concert.

I mean you could be busy every single night of the week.

Yeah, it's pretty busy and I tried to go to as many events as I can get to ever.

Can I go in your Stead to the ones you can go there's something that you can duplicate for me you let me know and I'll sort it out for you, but I'll go easy on you for the rest of the interview then ok, but I think you know the last few months is probably reasonably typical and you in the summer where there's there's a lot of festivals going on we host and operate British Summer Time Hyde Park which is a big 65000 capacity festival 6 nights 65000 people every night and I'll be over at the O2 without a host of music events over the last few months and then I'll try and visit our venues abroad as much as I can so literally in the last few weeks and test event at a new venue that were operating val-d'oise arena in lizanne, which was a and under 20s hockey event for 1500 people just to make sure that the Venue is working in kind of going for it.

And then popped over to Berlin to see an NHL ice hockey pre-season game where our local team the team that we Own the Night band playing against Chicago so big difference there and back to London for Mamma Mia the party which she just mentioned.

There was a grand opening of that.

It's a brand new immersive theatrical experience based on Mamma Mia the movie and performed by Grey cast and created by as and the original A-Team a very brief introduction to about the summary of it in the introduction, but could you give Alice as a bit more? I mean? How do you dream your own world in terms of the scope and breadth of what you do.

Yeah as you mentioned is pretty broad and when we pride ourselves up into into 5 main divisions of a g in Europe is pretty much a microcosm of AG worldwide.

We have a venues division that runs operates managers.

Venues worldwide about 150 venues, they could be anywhere between 2080 up to 60000 St Stadium we have a g presents which is the second largest promoting the world it will host and promote a range of artists around the world that likes of Ed Sheeran Rolling Stones Katy Perry after and part of that division also looks at festival so far is a festival that a lot of people have heard of spaced in in the States hearing in Europe we have arranged as well.

We have a sports division that own sports teams and here in Europe we have a nice day and we also have an ownership interest in soccer team up in time, but it's also about working with lots of different sports federations in organisations and delivering sports content to our venues.

We have great relationships with the likes of the NHL and NBA over.

Place where they will play their teams in a lot of our venues and as a result of those relationships we can bring either NHL NBA over to to Europe in London the O2 as a regular season NBA game for the last 10 years and we have a global partnerships team that essentially sells sponsorship and premium seating explain what is to all of those different types of events with its for AEG presents or prevent usual for a sports teams and then we have a real estate arm which really looks optimise the real estate capabilities as some of our biggest strategic sites in here in Europe we got mercedes-platz and Mercedes-Benz Arena over in Berlin which is a really big entertainment District about the original site that we require is about 45 acres is a Mercedes-Benz Arena and we've developed an entertainment District around that with twenty past bars and restaurants to hotels cinema.

Bowling alley additional Music Theatre and so the real estate team is really looking at how we can optimise the capability of the site and deliver something for the area.

I think in hearing in London it will also have quite sit within it within those five key strategic pillars, and that's the Thames Clippers that I mentioned earlier business in 2006 when we first opened the O2 with a keen to make sure that fans and visitors.

Would have a good great travel experience at the time the solely rely on the Jubilee line to be able to deliver that too with a keen to be able to have an opportunity to get passengers on and off the of the Peninsula and we invest in Thames Clippers and is a great business in its own right and delivers 4 million commuters day trippers and tourists alike across the Thames in London as a lovely journey as well.

Isn't it absolutely

Definitely the best way to travel in the castle.

Obviously the O2 is the signature UK venue.

It's come a long way from being called the White Elephant there when it was the Millennium Dome when it opened I was there on Sunday January 8th or something walking around again.

This is a bit now.

It's not plowed millions into it for sure back in 2000 when it open for the Millennium there is a plan there for a year too much for plan for what was going to happen to it there after and it sat dormant for a number of years.

We had built a business in the States with you as an entertainment District for example in Los Angeles where we have had a liver is very much a similar type of model to what is currently there at the O2 at the moment.

So very keen to see whether we could find a site that would be able to develop into something like an la live and the at the Millennium Dome as it was then became that site.

And in June 2007 and when we opened the Greenwich Peninsula that was the only thing on the Peninsula at the time it requires significant investment you would say it's probably a calculated risk.

I don't think many people believed that it could turn into something positive, but I think you know for sure I think everyone has been proved wrong and it's been the world's best live entertainment value most popular live entertainment venue since it opened in 2007 so now you go in there.

It's got an arena With Two and a Half Men people visiting each year the rest of the the site the O2 as a whole has 89 million people coming to every single year.

I mean there's a shopping outlet there now, isn't it? That's right.

Yeah, we're very keen to the arena.

Of course.

It was very keen to develop the whole O2 as a worldwide Premier Leisure and

Destination so you've got 30 bars and restaurants you have a smaller Theatre you have as a save the Mamma Mia the party as an experienced and then they are added anchors such as you have you got an ability to walk over the roof of the O2 at the O2 and 2000 people do every single year is now but London's largest cinema in Cineworld with about 18 and about a year ago.

We just we launched icon outlet which is a brand new designer outlet shopping facility the opportunity to for customers to come to experience 60 + premium lifestyle brands that at least 70% off your high street retail prices, so it's really develop into a real integrated holistic experience for the consumer for the fan and you know some people might argue.

What's the state of UK retail, but really this is.

The state of UK retail if you like I think the internet delivers a huge choice for the consumer unit provides use value for the consumer and if you look at the traditional High Street economy people are moving away from and too much more experience based economy, so I come out.

It is kind of confluence of those aspects where have a great experience go shopping do a lot of other leisure based activity.

See the huge level of variety and also get great value at it in and out that experience to become the permanent home for in an NBA basketball team or us hockey franchise, I think the fans and a team would would really enjoy the experience is certainly a great venue for sport.

I think it's well known for its music live music and live entertainment but it's also welcome sports venue.

We've had NBA games there before and we do the ATP finals have been doing that.

The last 10 years and got two more years of doing that so it's certainly lends itself to a brilliant sporting experience and will be very happy to have conversations with teams that I think the right of the NBA is showing that there's a real appetite for that type of Sport here in the UK in here in London they could certainly sell a lot more tickets than they currently do at the same time.

I'm really keen to you preserve the variety and quality of what the O2 delivers London is one of the world's best live music markets and your ability to you have had that flexibility in the diary allows us to do some home some great things you know when the year we open where 21 nights of Prince and we we've had a brilliant countless residences throughout the years Monty Python reforming in Havant

Next year ago Elton John doing 9 nights and counting so not having a residence or team sunny give us a staff flexibility to be able to demonstrate what London can do and make it a play music many you think you guys have done any more to keep the ATP tennis finals at the O2 of the next year well.

We're super happy with our partnership with TP we've had that event for 10 years we got it coming up this year.

We'll have the event next year the ATP finals it is a by definition is a nomadic events and I think it's inception in 1970 and only after Madison Square Garden of that event for more than 3 years recently did a lot and most keep it but I think you are the tides were always changing to some extent with us always a lot of pressure players want to move around and so on.

Someone came with her without with a very very big check.

I think it would probably be fiscally responsible of us to have been able to keep it given the money that will be guaranteed by the government in ensuring.

You know there's a significant guaranteed prize money for the players in a significant check for the ATP which I think you know they had to take seriously and it's not something that an event can run in its own right.

It's a stain that type of those gone finances.

So you know where we said to see it.

Go we've got two more years of it, which was very happy about and I think it would give us an opportunity to do even more great things that are the diary in the timer calendar which isn't accepting busy year for music and entertainment anyway when you guys are some of the very successful British Summer Time Hyde Park concerts.

I've been to quite a few of those at Carol

Recently, I love that.

Yeah.

I mean you got the volume turned up with someone without even enjoying the local residents.

How did you do that? I think there's some time.

I park is really really set the bar for festivals in the UK and potentially globally it is a fantastic festival.

I think the key to it is our festival team won by Jean King yeah, they would they really take care of working with the stakeholders the Royal Parks is the is the owner of the site with a keen to work with them about what's important to them and the community in the rest of stakeholders around and you know that say you're a year-long obsession about making sure that we deliver good things for the stakeholders and it's become you an amazing event to the event.

Obviously is is brilliant music and brilliant axe and we've had this year.

We had sell out Night by Florence and machines.

Wanda young Celine Dion Barbra Streisand how many people came from across the road to see Bob Dylan this summer the new generation of headliners are coming along to replace these kind of ageing Rockledge yes, I think there's a lot of discussion around this.

It's a topic that people in the industry.

Will talk about all the time.

I think and rightly so you know it's the lifeblood of I need to make sure that there is telling always coming through but essentially my answer is yes and don't get me wrong we benefit a lot from the enduring Legacy of some of these great artists but I also then went to see Taylor Swift earlier.

You got you got double my money exactly and you know the great thing about it sometime.

I park is that you'll see it at least 10 packs a day from an amazing Legends to to an upcoming Star

Let's face it I mean the biggest star in the world at the moment is Ed Sheeran and he could probably sell out or 6 nights of of Hyde Park by himself, and I think there's there's always a concern about where does the next bus is going to come from because at the end of day.

You don't know what you don't know right and you can't see where they're going to come from but they do and it is an artist's selling out for nights at the O2 next year Billie eilish, and I think she's been turned 18 yet people would have heard of her a year ago and this year.

She was Blazing a trail in festivals worldwide and you can see she can sell out as an Unbelievable night, so there's there's always new artist.

I think everyone in the industry has a responsibility to her to find out artist as well, so 80% self promoter on will work with some very big artists but will also work with.

Artists coming through so that some slow time which is a mercury nominated artist has come through this year Rex orange county is done at Whitehall for Khalid is now I think he's 21 is you work his way through the clubs and theatres and is now doing worldwide arena tour so it goes people and what's the Genesis for something like the summertime live concerts, how many how how do you think of doing something like that much less put it on yeah.

There's a lot to take into account and I think this is where the power of the team really as you mentioned earlier that creativity behind it and coming up with a concept that that really works and that concept has to work for all the stakeholders involved it for for British summer time has to work for the Royal Parks and has to be sympathetic and completely in lockstep with their vision and values and we have a creative team of a working at through and you.

Also, they want to deliver a brilliant experience around it so see for that event Music is called but it's so much more than the music These Days people demand and one an amazing experience so it's it's about insuring as in great food and beverage offerings.

It's about delivering variety throughout the day.

I'm about delivering variety of artists and range of artists to be able to deliver them that and you know the impact of a festival can be significantly want to make sure that there's your is minimal environmental impact on on the on the area and will have a leave no trace type policy to ensure that the environmental aspects are are absolutely perfect so is it an amazing amount of effort going into in?

That everything's recycle that there's a new minimal zero carbon emissions and then there's the impact on the community and you're making sure that the sound impact from from The Event itself or giving them an opportunity to come to the event itself, so if you take my park is actually attend a 10-day event bookended by three pay for concerts, but there's a 4-day community festival during the week, which will come along that be free cinema Wimbledon screenings mass yoga sessions.

I think we have the world record might still have the world record for the world's biggest hit session at one point and you know that's that's the success of bringing in an experience that your everyone can enjoy and and and takes all of those those boxes with the growing industry.

Joseph of dead artist speak to the Future of live entertainment and you mentioned there about environmental impact of course.

I'm sure hologram shows of live artists of anaesthetic office.

What does why should Taylor Swift flying the O2 when she can stand in Nashville and be broadcast as a hologram to her fans at the O2 is this a passing fad or is this something where everyone's going to be a hologram in the future on stage? There's definitely a market for hologram acts and events you.

There's been arranged over the last few years.

He mentioned Elvis Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison that we've had Whitney Houston One this year and I think what it does is give the the fan and opportunity to experience the live event in a new setting and normally come along with live Orchestra and an opportunity for people to experience and Isis they might not been able to seen in the past.

I personally I don't think it will.

You take over the live scene, but I think it will be an interesting niche and we will be there for some time and the time to come and they will be 24 Live artists or and your for example are looking into their own hologram based come back because they won't want to come out live again and that yeah that would be an opportunity for people to come and experience so I think it's it's definitely a nice that will be there for sometime.

I don't overtake the the Essential live experience of of the acts that are there today.

How do you ensure that the ticket to get to phones and not for the likes of Vigo guys? Is there a limit to how much people will be willing to be on the primary market if you can call it that yeah, I mean this is a big issue and biggest U fans biggest.

This is a big issue for all of us in this industry.

We have a company called access ticketing.

I think there are two key issues that people that are really about one is your making sure the tickets genuine and secondly that people are paying fair price for this ticket so access 16 has a new product that basically deal with that and that's where all of our texting is going so one is very technology-based flash mobile tickets delivery there will be a unique digital identifier to every single ticket that is generally includes a rotating bar codes that means that it can't be replicated.

So if you've got that you know that it's a genuine ticket and there's we also have something called access marketplace, which basically means if you have bought a ticket and then you realise you can't go to that to that event you can sell the ticket in that environment.

And also said it fireplace the fact that it's on that on that marketplace means that the the person buying a ticket knows it's a real genuine ticket.

There's no chance of that being illegally duplicated.

What does it stop the speculators way, it's on of even my cousin does this where to buy 20 tickets for the Whitney Houston hologram experience and then know that she's not going to sell them on by Google the the prices Ltd cats on on that system, so you'll be basically at the moment.

Is it set it set at 10% of the the ticket price she got the Best of Both Worlds really so I can buy hundreds of tickets for hootie and the Blowfish know and I can sell them on but if I do have two tickets and I can't make it.

I do have the ability to resell them because there's no point you having to empty seats replacement Maze could be buying hot dogs and you know it's a Sprite absolutely the whole point of the technology is that it off and friendly and putting the fan first so the fan.

Genuine ticket and the fan also knows that they're not going to get have to overpay for that ticket going to be a new Madison Square Garden owned venue isn't that plan for Stratford reception forecast I saw that you guys are quite real concerns about the kind of congestion and dizziness when they ought to is is also has an artistic.

That's right.

I'll concerns are not about competition concerns.

You know we do think that London is a market.

That is big enough to have you another large-scale venue, but we don't think is right isn't it? So basically next door to the O2 and the key concern that we have is the impact that will have fans coming to to The O2 in the experience that they have so I don't think the the Jubilee line.

Can't really take two big sell out concerts next to each other and and that's going to affect people in terms of coming to the venue or leaving the venue.

Leaving early where I used to hate those people you know when I Was a Youngster I go to concerts and other people that would start to leave when the on-call started to beat the crowd and I thought I'll never become one of those people and I haven't yet, but I'm starting to empathize with them.

Yeah, I mean after a great thing about the O2 at the moment you can see you can stay there to the end of the concert and you can get out really quickly and you get back central London and that's where with you we will protect try and protect what we can and terms of making sure that the fan experience for 4 people to come to the O2 is is is retained so what's your position in Madison Square Garden is welcome, but they need to go elsewhere.

I think you are and I think this is a good thing for the city of London to work through there's there's a London plan which is easily looks at the future of London and where best things should be placed in someone and so forth I think there are you much?

For a venue that size compared to where it is at the moment whether it's in West or South London or North London I don't think it makes sense to put it right next to the O2 and your strategy for sale defending them off will be by the lawyers are consulting with the local council and I mean everything to me episodes of The Sopranos I just go around in baseball that then you wouldn't do that.

It's not a your skin absolutely.

Yeah, I mean the planning application and it's been reviewed by the planning authorities the bank of comments from a range of different stakeholders.

We certainly put in your our concerns to the planning authorities and they've been reviewing that at the moment.

I think they've now gone back to Gita with concerns at all kinds of stakeholders have raisins you is not just us.

I think it's there's a lot of local residents and businesses.

Concerns that have been raised to the planning authorities at MSG now to think about dog.

What are the expansion possibilities for a GMod coming to see can expand Geographic into new Territories to new verticals? Is it about increasing profitability and retention of what you already doing? What's top of your to-do list when you get out of bed in the morning of cleaning your teeth and getting into work.

What's on your mind? Yeah? There's a lot of possible areas for us to expand with literally just announced to quite significant transactions for the creation of a new company in the joint venture cut now called ASM global where we moved our aging facilities which is essentially are managed business where we manage my news on behalf of landlords that been merged with SMG to create the world's largest managed venue company which gives clients.

Your greater access to resources greater access to the to the best people and it gives our staff the opportunity to even use super serve their clients even more so that's 1 hour which was expanded and access 16, which I was referred to referring to earlier and we we held a third interesting that company.

We've just announce that we now have the present owner of assisting with a keen to really you develop the technology for access 16-ft 4AG you the ticket and tickets is absolutely call to everything we do and it's absolutely the customer journey that someone comes to an event whether it's in an arena or theatre or at festival and prosecute us the opportunity to really be able to control our destiny in that regard to their two significant things that we just done lately and then for me.

It's where else can I see you wear AG Europe can expand its footprint so

We we love the Capital markets that we operate in the Lights of London and Berlin and Paris and so on so they could be additional geographies that will get into Capital markets in in Europe that were looking at that could be a new arena.

He could be new festivals so with a keen to see whether there's no opportunity for festivals so the the opportunities are significant risks with the challenge becomes choosing the right opportunity opportunity cost of even what you choose to focus on comes at the expense of you could have to focus on something else.

That's right and it we've got a great team whose focused on that we do absolutely have to be focused I think with therefore we need to think about where's our core strengths and what is the core capability that we can really add value on as I say what you will about delivering memorable.

What is the fans and that will always be underpinning exactly what we can do and I think there are a number of opportunities with it's either you dim the smaller venues or Arenas or delivering you festivals or whether we can also deliver more more Tours and represent more more artists.

I think it will be the areas in which were focusing on global entertainment for 3-months and flextech the UK is clearly recognised as a world leader in TV Brands is it not think you need to look at the UK successes in the Emmys recently Phoebe waller-bridge in solo trailblazing and I think that's been the case for many many years in the side of things UK terrestrial broadcasting the way and our production houses Leeds away and you think you had Jeremy darroch on here a few.

From Sky the big names and humble yourself and your Skype them in terms of the original content space and brought some really great new content to us.

What's interesting is in for me more of an Observer in that industry these days.

You'll see there's so much more investment in the industry with the likes of the Netflix is in the Amazon Prime's and apple getting in on the act and what does that mean for UK broadcasters I suspect it's is good for for UK production houses, but I was one of my favourite shows that I just watched the top boy on the Channel 4 series full Show series and I think they stop making it in 2014.

I don't know.

Their history is The Wire but the you know Netflix is coming produced by Drake made it attention series it's it's phenomenal.

Could you walk through your career? What do you want to do when you start what degree did you study in did you always want to be doing this kind of thing executive within the entertainment space? Yeah, it's fair to say that I've never particularly had a strong vision in that regard yourself.

Well.

I think I've never known exactly what I wanted to do but I think I've always had a value system of doing whatever whatever I'm doing.

I really want to do well.

So I'm you after my A-levels I wouldn't particularly sure what I want to do.

I'm not now exactly and it's so I chose the business days degree can go wrong exactly generalists gave me a good and this broad understanding of of the world of business.

It has a years placement as part of that so yeah.

An opportunity for work experience and and ISO some based up in ICI and Runcorn as an accounts assistant for a year but I think you just gave me an opportunity to to find another job post University and again even at that point wasn't entirely sure where I wanted to go so I apply for your marketing jobs.

Apply for financial strategy jobs.

I got a role at KPMG to study my chartered accountancy qualification.

You can choose a particular industry in which you can focus in so it was manufacturing finance government services or and I chose media and entertainment practice because I wanted to be involved in something that I can relate to and I've always enjoyed this type of thing you can chat to be mates in the pub About You TV and media and entertainment so

Get chance to meet some celebrity as well.

Well.

There's always that aspect to working in the media and entertainment well.

It's something that is here.

It's exciting it's interesting that so I think that probably might have had something to do with it and I worked in a range of different media and entertainment clients one of those clients was flextech television which was a cable and satellite TV operator delivering a group of siematic channels to someone who is paying for a basic TV package for Sky and the cable operators and we we delivered about 15 different channels that UK TV channels and I like living in brother and challenge in trouble TV and it was a great company to be associated with their highly entrepreneurial high growth and

They then I reached out and offered me a job in their head of business planning and strategy department about it working through business plans and working through the next growth opportunities and so on so forth I jumped at the chance because the company was fun loads of people it was going Places it was entrepreneur.

I just felt like I could learn loads of that company.

I think I was there for 7 years and for someone in their 20s is one of the best experiences you can you can have in the middle of London and highly entrepreneurial growth based business, I was then approached about a role at fremantlemedia to keep getting head hunted then it must be good at interviews.

Protective isn't was it was a domestic company focused on the UK fremantlemedia was a worldwide company again in the content space global leading content creators in the world at that time then still is and there was opportunity for me to really going to get that worldwide experience to the role it really turn out the way I wanted it to be here is an opportunity for me to come and see if I will end up in the turn out to be the case ended up in danger of rolling out ASAP finance systems around the world so I was working.

He just as the O2 was opening and they were looking for a finance director to to run the O2 don't know what I said.

He is if I'm honest I know I should do when I see the

Standing in the adverts and I'm going to computer platform.

I'm scared of ask me any questions about it at all.

Which is probably the best thing for sure she then became too that's right and I joined at a time.

Just as it opens and the company had gone from being a major construction site to being crazy 100% fully operational event every single night.

There's so much going on and I think my role at the time was really to bring a bit of an order to the to the financial systems and processes as well as deliver key performance indicators and inability for the management to understand the Business of doing in where is going but because there was so much going on in there was a real opportunity to to get involved in the wider business in terms of a new event.

To The O2 in terms of being able to optimise the capabilities of our events in terms of services to customers and the financial capability of real event and yeah if you were of a mind that you could you if you wanted to do something and go for it.

You saw an opportunity.

I had a great ceo's were happy to let me run with things and I think that was my experience at flextech television gave me that opportunity to say ok look this is yeah.

There's some great opportunities to grow water get new events in and worked on you bringing the BRIT Awards over to the O2 we worked on the ATP finals coming to the O2 when they become mainstays of of of shows at the O2 and that you really help me broaden my skills outside of my original finance qualifications.

AG was going at the same time.

We're looking at venues in Berlin and Hamburg we're quiet.

What is called Caroline Arena and Hamburg in 2008 which then became we built the Mercedes-Benz arena in Berlin till we start getting much bigger with European footprint and then 2011 and we created a European management team to oversee all of our European businesses at that point all of the European business Awards being directly funneled into into LA which is where I head offices at the moment and you just time differences in another part.

Is that they had a really need a European management team so I was CFO for Europe for a while and then became CEO over Europe and my CEO retires at the end of last year and since then, how's it going?

I love a g and a lot of people that work there, so it's your is the role is issues challenging is different.

I probably had a few more tonight.

It's probably fair to say heavy is the Crown well the great thing is I said before that there's a team of people who are absolutely the best of the game so you can work as a team and generally speaking manage any situation that you're confronted with so but you know that I'm definitely kind of go to see new places for short.

So that's so there's so many things to learn as I go home and what are the perks and what are the downsides because I mean I imagine you get to meet be on sale Billy Joel but then you also have paid and you have to make your manager cash flowing hiring firing at the very highest level that I know it's myself and small business if you're hiring someone seen here if you get it wrong the consequences can be disastrous.

Hiring and the and the scale of hiring is probably one of the most important things that you can you can do well at and it will do as you say the wrong hire can can set you back a long way this so many perks of working age.

Are you in a live environment? You see so many your previous to see so many types of axe and sporting moments.

They are complicated as well that you you're delivering very integrated events that were experienced and having a brilliant time for the fan.

Is is of utmost importance you were sitting at need to think about France safety and everything associated with it as well.

So this is a super suicide to it as well.

You make sure if the team is focused on all of those aspects.

So yeah, I can't really think of me down sides to it though.

It's a busy job, but it comes with many many.

And you are right now that it's about experiential no more than anything else was in the old days people wanted to acquire things DVDs CDs and everything is online now in the Cloud on Spotify sweaty the demand is to to go and see hootie and the Blowfish live rather than just merely streaming their songs technology has created this and much more experience you based environment.

You might see my kids.

Not really tickly interacting with each other speaking you know the texting on social media all the time but that that that development on technology is increased the need for experienced based events and people super keen and sharing their experiences.

So they need and want to go to live events and whether it's a music festival or a concert or

Sport event which delivers unpredictability and amazing highs and lows of people want to be part of those things and people want to share those things so it's weird instrument for some time and I think it will continue to develop in that way, what's next for a G I think there's so many more things that we can I think we deliver great customer experiences, but I think that can any continue to develop and enhance them.

You are really keen for us to focus on things like that and you know as I say it is it is it is a number of gross capabilities for us that vacant for us to focus on going forward people like that of the company in the brand itself because it's human nature that the line to be a fan of said Beyonce All the even though to as a venue, but no one has gone to like the AG Facebook page and like that.

People do have that kind of relationship with you at the fan level we have different touch points with fans and you because of the breadth of our business.

We will see many different ways so from a team ownership on if you feel part of the sports team is at the Berlin eisbaren or the teams that we own and operate and in in the States and then I see I Kings you know the connection between the fan and the sports team is so intimate and they live their life with you on Friday night or Sunday lunch time you ice hockey game you'll see these people really really kind of you being absolutely ready to the demon and the connections with timo incredibly deep you're right when you're you're delivering a concert more the connection is with with the artist so as a venue.

You want to make sure that when that sounds come in to see that artists they just have the best experience they can possibly get you might you at the O2 and most menus are around the world if you look at the average number of times that someone might go to my only been once or twice a year.

You'll have some people are super fans and might go 20 times a year but the majority that you only have that connection a couple so yeah absolutely the main connections are wiser with the teams with the artist that that's where the connection is the most enjoyable experience of you so far too many the thing about you.

What's your favourite? What's my favourite colour of into all that I kind of

HomeServe individual moment if you look back over there in my time and energy anyway, there are specific moments in a concert or a night or a sports event or you just your kind of blown away that we have we had Adele performing Someone Like You Wish I think was the platform for her new transcending into the stratosphere.

Is it from my point of view it everyone away in there in the Venue it was one of those moments where the hairs down on the back of the net and then you just earlier this year and Robbie Williams performing Angels a65000 people seeing it for him and it's you that they're just they're just amazing moments and then you can see the likes of Murray vs.

Djokovic Nadal Roger Federer and the the Sporting drama and the unpredictable.

Associated with some of those things are you know it the special moment so I'm quite privileged in that regard last question they might be someone fairly young listening to this incredibly ambitious that will be the next President of the company.

May be a decade or two from now when you choose to voluntarily relinquish the seat advice.

Would you give to someone like that that is ambitious that usually tires.

Are you doing what you've achieved and wants to be the next to you.

I think there is another thing that someone can focus on for me.

What serves me well is too you know to listen to my boss has asked me to do something.

I've done what they asked for and then I'll try to over deliver.

So is it was a better way that I could present for always ask the question answer the question, but I've always then to see the wave you can I is that the very best I can deliver in terms of

Your any project or initiative and I think you know you've lost you gotta You Gotta push you got to push everything's and boss of mine in the past.

We said keep on going until someone tells you to stop and yeah, I think that's one of those areas where it is important to you try something new try and deliver something out of the box.

Give that extra special moment to something and I think those combination of those two things working hard and you try to redeliver sent me ok.

Well.

I'll accept the other delivered for this conversation at all.

I need to do that.

Thank you for your time.

It's been really enjoyable.

Thank you.

Thank you very much for having a right angles podcast in association with big things Media


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