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Design & Development

Populous invests in venue-planning software provider OnePlan

Featured image credit: Populous/OnePlan

Sports and entertainment venue design practice Populous has secured a strategic investment in event site and venue-planning software provider OnePlan.

Neither the value of the deal nor the stake was publicly disclosed in today’s announcement.

OnePlan has supported more than 40,000 events and venues worldwide through its technology, including its 3D digital platform VenueTwin, which enables teams to visualise and plan operations in a virtual version of venues by integrating architectural CAD and floorplan files.

The company has a client list that includes Crypto.com Arena, the Intuit Dome, Silverstone and ExCeL London, and is also the official supporter of GIS mapping and digital twin software for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

OnePlan’s GIS mapping collaboration platform, which has been utilised across 110 countries, can deliver time savings of up to 85%, according to the company.

Populous said that the deal would allow it to integrate VenueTwin with its own digital offerings to provide enhanced planning and visualisation throughout the design phase and the entire lifecycle of projects.

“This strategic investment is part of our commitment to focus on digital innovation across our business,” said Populous co-founder and chair Earl Santee, who was appointed CEO in March.

“OnePlan is a company we’ve admired for a long time. Alongside our own design and operational expertise our strategic investment with them will enhance our delivery capabilities for major events worldwide.”

Nick Reynolds, chief global strategy officer at Populous, added: “The increasing role that virtual environments play in the collaborative design process, and the opportunities they provide in connecting venues and events to their audiences before and after opening, is key to our design approach and ongoing relationship with our clients.

“OnePlan has established itself as the leading collaborative platform in 2D and 3D event planning and they will work in tandem with our internal digital teams to enhance the digital twin services we can offer our clients.”

Today’s news comes after private equity firm Providence Equity Partners in October acquired a minority stake in Populous, a deal the company said would allow it to broaden its reach and pursue both organic and inorganic growth opportunities worldwide.

Paul Foster, founder and CEO of OnePlan, said: “This investment opens an exciting new chapter for OnePlan, building on the fast growth we’ve experienced to date. The unrivalled knowledge and specialisms of the team at Populous will deepen the positive impact our software provides. “We’re excited by the new opportunities this partnership opens, and the many benefits it creates for events and venues across the world.”