TheStadiumBusiness Awards winners announced

SoFi Stadium was named Venue of the Year as the best of the sector was celebrated at TheStadiumBusiness Awards 2021 at Emirates Old Trafford in Manchester.

The new home of the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers was selected as the top venue in a category that also featured ground-breaking venues from Europe, North America and Australasia.

Allegiant Stadium, the new home of Las Vegas Raiders, took two prizes on the night. Las Vegas Raiders and BRC Imagination Arts won the Fan Experience Award (sponsored by Avixa) for Allegiant Stadium Tours, while Wynn Field Club at Allegiant Stadium took the Interior & Fit-Out Award.

Stadium sector leader David Keirle was the recipient of the Outstanding Achievement award for more than three decades of pioneering work since founding KSS Group.

“Congratulations to everyone who reached the podium,” commented Ian Nuttall, founder of TheStadiumBusiness Awards. “Winners included our industry’s leaders, achievers and stand-out venues, who should all be very proud of their achievements.”

Now in their 12th year, TheStadiumBusiness Awards are the only awards to recognise a whole spectrum of achievements from across the global stadium industry. The winners were selected by an expert panel comprising senior figures from major venues, sports organisations and businesses across Asia, Australasia, Europe and North America.

The awards ceremony took place in front of an audience of senior industry figures.

BeAsOne Community Program from Italy’s Cagliari Calcio took the Sustainability and Community Award, while the Innovation Award went to GroundWOW’s AV/AI-driven Ground Printer.

The Venue Technology Award was handed to Olympiastadion Berlin GmbH for its LED Lighting System, while Project of the Year was Leicester City FC Training Ground.

The Sponsorship, Sales & Marketing Award went to Avicii Arena and stakeholders Trygg-Hansa and Bauhaus/ASM Global/Tim Bergling Foundation.

Al Guido, President of San Francisco 49ers, was named Executive of the Year, while Jackie Ventura, Director of Facility Health and Hygiene at Golden State Warriors, won the Unsung Hero Award.

Full details of all winners, nominees and judges are below…


Hundreds of nominations were whittled down to create the shortlist, judged by an independent panel of industry figures including:

  • Jacque Holowaty, VP Employee & Guest Experience, Climate Pledge Arena

  • Nick Sautner, Chief Executive Officer, The Eden Park Trust

  • Dionna Widder, Chief Revenue Officer, Houston Dynamo

  • Darren Burden, Executive Director, Kai Tak Sports Park

  • Mel Raines, EVP of Corporate Comms, Community Engagement & Facility Operations, Pacers Sports & Entertainment

  • Paul Fisher, Consultant (Former Chief Executive, Jockey Club Racecourses)

  • Christian Lau, CTO, Los Angeles FC / Banc of California Stadium

  • Andy O’Sullivan, Venue Director, Tottenham Hotspur FC

  • Ian Nuttall, CEO & Co-Founder, TheStadiumBusiness


The Winners and Shortlisted Nominees in each category are as follows:


Category Winner: BeAsOne Community Program – Cagliari Calcio

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Aarhus. Ansvar. Fremtid: Strategic sustainability program – AGF Aarhus

•             The Beacon: Community Hub – Foundation of Light, Sunderland FC

•             SMISA Stadium – St Mirren FC

•             Toronto Vaccine Day: Our Winning Shot – Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment

•             Wall of Honour: Ajax Fan Columbarium – PC Uitvaart/Ajax FC/Funeral Products


Category Winner: Allegiant Stadium Tours – Las Vegas Raiders/BRC Imagination Arts

Shortlisted nominees:

•             5G Test Bed at Cegeka Arena – KRC Genk, Belgium

•             Power Portal – Cleveland Cavaliers, USA

•             AberDNA & Challenger Club strategy – Aberdeen FC, Scotland

•             Warriors’ Dub Hub – Golden State Warriors, USA


•             Category Winner: AV/AI-driven Ground Printer– GroundWOW

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Social Distancing Seating Tool – 3D Digital Venue

•             VenueShield™ Programme – ASM Global

•             Venue Twin – OnePlan

•             VfL Connect hospitality app – VfL Wolfsburg

•             Covid Safety Hub – Realife Tech


Category Winner: Wynn Field Club at Allegiant Stadium – Las Vegas Raiders

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Cache Creek Club at Levi’s Stadium – San Francisco 49ers

•             Field Cabanas and Bungalow Suites at SoFi Stadium – LA Rams

•             Interior Preservation and Modernisation – Helsinki Olympic Stadium

•             Westview at Stamford Bridge – Chelsea FC/KSS


Category Winner: LED Lighting System in Berlin’s Olympic Stadium – Olympiastadion Berlin GmbH

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Infrastructure and Technology Services at Adams Park – Wycombe Wanderers FC / Landways Management

•             Nationwide EPOS Implementation – ASM Global (UK)

•             PAM Wayfinding & Touchpoints at SoFi Stadium – LA Rams/Hollywood Park

•             Technology Partners Integration at Chase Center – Golden State Warriors


Category Winner: Leicester City FC Training Ground – Leicester City FC

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Grand Palais Ephemere – Jean-Michel Wilmotte/GL Events/Paris2024

•             Helsinki Olympic Stadium renovation – Helsinki, Finland

•             Lynn Family Stadium – Soccer Holdings/Louisville City FC/HOK

•             Compton & Edrich Stands at Lord’s – Marylebone Cricket Club/WilkinsonEyre

•             Sahlen Field renovations – Toronto Blue Jays


Category Winner: Avicii Arena – Trygg-Hansa and Bauhaus/ASM Global/Tim Bergling Foundation

Shortlisted nominees:

•             DRV PNK Stadium – Inter Miami CF

•             The Hundred – England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB)

•             ‘New Lawn’ naming rights – Forest Green Rovers FC

•             Virtual Pink Seat – Sydney Cricket Ground/McGrath Foundation/Cricket Australia


Category Winner: Jackie Ventura, Director of Facility Health and Hygiene, Golden State Warriors

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Danielle Snyder, Senior Vice President, Guest Services & Security, STAPLES Center

•             Lesley Spuhler, CEO, Foundation of Light (Sunderland AFC)

•             Gary Storrie, Health and Safety Manager, Formula 1

•             James Tagg, Executive Head Chef, Manchester United

•             Guy Wickett, Development Manager (En Todo), Crystal Palace FC


Category Winner: Al Guido, President, San Francisco 49ers

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Vince Cicero, SVP of Corporate Partnerships, FC Cincinnati /TQL Stadium

•             Eric Granger, General Manager, KFC Yum! Center

•             Freyja Handy, General Counsel (Europe), ASM Global

•             Joe Lacob, CEO & Co-Executive Chairman, Golden State Warriors

•             Tim Shannahan, CEO, Orangetheory Stadium


Category Winner: SoFi Stadium

Shortlisted nominees:

•             Allegiant Stadium

•             Anfield

•             Brentford Community Stadium

•             Chase Center

•             Suncorp Stadium

•             WiZink Center Madrid


•             David Keirle, Chair, KSS