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Optus Stadium celebrates a year since opening

Perth’s Optus Stadium is this week celebrating a year since it opened, with more than two million fans having attended events at the venue in the past 12 months.

The 60,000-seat has hosted 43 major events, as well as 420 meetings and special events, and 1,450 stadium tours.

According to figures released by the stadium this week, 57,776 guests attended meetings and special events, with 31,550 having enjoyed stadium tours. This brings the total number of guests to 2,068,109 – up to and including the Big Bash League cricket match between the Perth Scorchers and Hobart Hurricanes on January 18.

The stadium hosted its first public open day on January 21 last year before staging its first event seven days later when Australia hosted England in a one-day international cricket match.

Optus Stadium chief executive Mike McKenna said: “The most pleasing was the results from six State Government customer satisfaction surveys which showed overall fan satisfaction was 94 per cent to 98 per cent, across multiple stadium events, demonstrating fans have really enjoyed their new home of sport and entertainment.

“We saw more than 122,000 regional, interstate and international visitors book tickets and travel to events at Optus Stadium making this venue a genuine tourism attraction. The Perth public embraced the public transport system with more than 1.46 million fans travelling to Optus Stadium on buses and trains. We have also employed 3,121 casual staff, giving many West Australians an opportunity in the workforce.”

Optus Stadium has also revealed that its catering division placed some Aus$21.8m (£12m/€13.8m/$15.8m) in orders to food and beverage suppliers. Sixty-eight per cent of these were placed to Western Australia-based companies.

The stadium also sold more than 500,000 buckets of chips, 225,000 Mrs Mac’s pastries and over one million litres of Gage Roads beer. On the digital front, 80 per cent of transactions at the venue were cashless, while the stadium’s app was downloaded 61,000 times.

Looking ahead to 2019, McKenna said: “There will be a 52-day period between June and August this year when Optus Stadium hosts 11 major events including two games featuring Manchester United – the biggest sporting team on the globe – against our own Perth Glory and long-time English rivals Leeds United.

“There are two events featuring two of the great rivalries in sport – the Australian Wallabies versus the world champion All Blacks and the iconic NRL State of Origin clash between bitter rivals NSW and Queensland.

“Throw in the AFL Grand Final replay between West Coast Eagles and Collingwood and a Saturday night Western Derby clash and there is every chance we will see 500,000 fans visit Optus Stadium over that period. We are expecting more than 50,000 fans at the sold-out Eminem concert later next month and the possibility of more big concerts being announced in 2019.”

Earlier this week, Optus Stadium was selected as a host venue for next year’s T20 World Cup. Although it will not stage a semi-final or final, it will host six games in the men’s tournament and five in the women’s.

Image: Tama Leaver