The ACC Liverpool Group, a multi-purpose events complex in the English city, has appointed Ben Williams as its new commercial director.

Williams joins from Leeds’ First Direct Arena, where he served as general manager, leading the team that launched the venue four years ago. Williams previously held positions at Manchester Arena and Capital Radio Group.

Williams will be responsible for developing the overall commercial strategy of the group, which comprises the BT Convention Centre, Echo Arena, Exhibition Centre Liverpool and ticketing agency TicketQuarter.

The news comes after Ian Ayre, former chief executive of Premier League football club Liverpool, was appointed as the group’s chair of the board last month.

“This is an exciting time for the ACC Liverpool Group with two new senior appointments,” the organisation’s chief executive, Bob Prattey, said. “Ben brings with him a wealth of industry experience and we have no doubt that he will be an integral part of our organisation across our portfolio of markets – international and national conferences, entertainment and sport, exhibitions and ticketing.

“Next year marks a decade since we opened our doors and we are confident that Ben will be a welcome addition to our talented team.”

Williams added: “Having worked in the events industry for many years, I am aware of the incredible journey that the ACC Liverpool Group has been on since it opened in 2008. I look forward to bringing my experience of working in large venues and contributing to the continued development of the organisation.”

ACC Liverpool opened in 2008 and has since generated £1.2bn (€1.4bn/$1.5bn) in economic impact to the city region. Highlights on this year’s calendar include Bob Dylan, Bruno Mars and the Gymnastics British Championships.