Ethara’s Chief Venues Officer foresees continued growth in trend of major global events coming to the Middle East alongside the need for consistent regional approach to venues.
Abu Dhabi, UAE- As the calendar of key international events continues to grow across the Middle East, leading operators need to adapt with this to implement region-wide standards and ensure versatility in venue capabilities, leading industry figures have said.
Speaking at the recent Saudi Events Show in Riyadh, Ethara’s Chief Venues Officer, Brint Jackson explained how the region’s top venues are currently delivering world-class international shows through efficiency and versatility, but also how brands are evolving to keep up with the growing demand.
“It’s an exciting time for the regional event landscape as more investment is made in the industry’s infrastructure.”
“This is especially the case in Saudi Arabia and across the GCC, as venues are being built with specific purposes in mind, while having the flexibility to adapt to requirements of large international tours and productions. It’s a continuing trend for venues to be built with versatility and ‘plug and play’ at the core of their design, and it will definitely help our region cope with the increasing demand and becoming an increasingly attractive touring route for large productions.”
Alongside the evolution towards developing venues and arenas that are flexible in delivery and capability, the increasing number of international brands entering the space is something that also requires considerable planning, with many tours following similar protocols and approaches to ensure efficiency in a busy calendar of events.
With the influx of global tours coming to the Middle East from all corners of the globe, this is something that Jackson feels can accelerate the region’s growth to becoming a world leader in international events.
“As one of the regional leaders in event delivery and venue management industry, the objective for Ethara is to provide the expert insight that we bring. One aspect we have found from our work with leading international brands and companies is how efficient they are in their planning and execution for events, and it must be that way considering their extensive calendars.
“What we find is that we need to adapt to their requirements, and our venues in Yas Marina Circuit and Etihad Arena are very advanced in this. But there is always room for growth, especially to ensure we can adapt to their approach and make event preparation, execution, and turnaround as seamless as possible.
“That’s how Etihad Arena can host a basketball match, a sold-out concert and an award-winning theatrical production all in the same week – versatility.”
The recent announcement from Ethara and Oak View Group of their new joint venture showcases a strategic partnership aiming to create the region’s leading venue, event, and hospitality venture.
In collaborating with one of the world’s biggest arena development companies, Jackson believes the opportunity to further grow not only Ethara’s capabilities in the region but also the region’s overall ability to host the world’s biggest events is greater than ever before.
“This new partnership is a major step for us, as we look forward to bringing our combined award-winning, international experience to upcoming projects in the Kingdom and region-wide.
“OVG’s portfolio of international venues speaks for itself, and the main asset that we feel will be most beneficial for us as well as the region overall is the level of expertise and experience that this partnership will provide.
“With OVG’s international industry insights, and Ethara’s regional pedigree and knowledge to tap into, we feel that this will hugely benefit the events and venue landscape in the years to come.”
Ethara, meaning ‘thrill’ in Arabic, operates an impressive portfolio of assets, including Yas Marina Circuit, Etihad Park, Etihad Arena, and the Yas Conference Centre.
The company was launched earlier this year following the integration of Abu Dhabi Motorsports Management (ADMM) and Flash Entertainment (Flash). It is a new powerhouse shaping the future of events, entertainment, and venue management throughout the Middle East and beyond.
Ethara is setting the standard of excellence in entertainment, sport, culture, event services, and asset management regionally and internationally. With offices throughout the region, the company employs over 300 professionals who offer an unrivalled wealth of expertise, experience, knowledge, and skills. Ethara, meaning ‘thrill’ in Arabic, manages an impressive portfolio of assets, including Yas Marina Circuit, Etihad Park, Etihad Arena, and the Yas Conference Centre. The company works with leading events companies, IP owners, and entertainment partners locally and internationally to deliver world-class, first-to-market events and experiences.