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Bodie takes on new COO role at Oak View Group

Featured image credit: Oak View Group

Oak View Group (OVG), the global venue development, advisory, and investment company for the sports and live entertainment industries, has promoted Francesca Bodie to the newly established position of chief operating officer.

Prior to her new role, Bodie served as OVG’s president of business development where she oversaw multiple global projects, the expansion of the company’s brand and its venues, and created growth in third-party partnerships by identifying new business opportunities globally.

Bodie’s role will now increase from capital development, mergers, and acquisitions to a focus on new revenue streams including overseeing all day-to-day operations for OVG globally, as well as leading the company’s executive committee.

Bodie’s promotion comes with OVG announcing a major strategic investment in Family Entertainment Holdings (FEH), as well as newly announced Navarro’s activations in partnership with Christian Navarro following April’s initial announcement of the venture. Bodie served as the architect of both deals that bring new premium entertainment offerings to OVG venues and partner venues globally.   

OVG will add touring family content with the investment in FEH, the developers of live events including Mattel’s Hot Wheels Monster Trucks and Magic of Lights. The brand extension with Christian Navarro, a leader in the premium wine and spirits industry, recently celebrated its first ultra-deluxe lounge with Baltimore’s The NINETEEN 62 Club at CFG Bank Arena and premium concession kiosks at four venues.

In addition to her ongoing responsibility for capital investment strategy and mergers and acquisitions, Bodie will lead the company in building processes across human resources, finance, legal, and marketing. Based in Denver, Bodie will report to Tim Leiweke, chairman and CEO of Oak View Group.

“I am honoured to lead and work alongside my exceptional team members that have worked tirelessly and passionately since OVG’s inception,” said Bodie. “Together, we’ve steadily developed Oak View Group into a world-class brand that resonates with fans, artists, and venue and sports professionals.

“With this announcement, we are continuing our focus on elevating all guests’ experiences through premium offerings and content at all OVG venues and those of our partners as well. I’m proud to be a part of a company that is passionate about continually raising industry standards and exceeding guest expectations to reshape the live entertainment experience.”

Bodie has served an instrumental role in leading key service company acquisitions and raising over $12bn (£9.55bn/€11.14bn) of invested capital for OVG’s multiple venues that have opened over the last 18 months, including the $1bn-plus makeover for the redevelopment of Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena, the winner of the Project of the Year title at this week’s TheStadiumBusiness Design & Development Awards.

She has also spearheaded new arena ventures deployed in areas such as New York’s $1.5bn UBS Arena, home to the NHL’s New York Islanders; the $375m Moody Center for the Texas Longhorns at the University of Texas in Austin; the $280m Mullett Arena in Tempe, AZ; and the $300m Acrisure Arena in Greater Palm Springs.

Presently, Bodie is leading upcoming OVG development projects including the new $10bn arena and live entertainment district in Las Vegas, a new arena in São Paulo, Brazil; and the $365m Co-op Live arena in Manchester, England.

Leiweke said: “2023 was a pivotal year for Oak View Group across its service business and owned and operated portfolio. OVG is the only company in history to build and open seven brand-new state-of-the-art venues within 18 months, and Francesca contributed greatly to that growth and success.

“As we look to the future, we’re honoured to have Francesca as OVG’s first COO to nurture and mature our current businesses and spearhead our next phase of growth in 2024 and beyond.”