LALIGA, RCD Mallorca and Juventus FC’s keys to maximising infrastructure revenues

Stadiums and training grounds were at the centre of the latest edition of the LALIGA EXTRA TIME online webinars series, with the most recent session titled “Sports Infrastructures - How to make the most out of sports facilities” and featuring experts in this field from Spain and from Italy.

LALIGA’s Club Infrastructure Consultant Milos Nenadovic shared several insights into how football clubs can maximise revenues from their facilities, while he was joined by Félix Torralba, the Chief Revenue Officer at RCD Mallorca, as well as Francesco Gianello, Head of Facilities Management at Juventus FC, and Paolo Monguzzi, Head of Stadium Revenue and Entertainment at Juventus FC.

How LALIGA helps clubs grow revenues from matchday, non-matchday and training grounds

In recent years, many Spanish clubs have undertaken significant infrastructure projects. Using funds from the Boost LALIGA project, clubs have improved their facilities in order to reach the next level and they have been able to count on the support of LALIGA and Milos Nenadovic throughout.

During the LALIGA Extra Time webinar, Nenadovic explained exactly how he came to work with Spanish clubs in this field. He stated: “Out of the BOOST LALIGA project, the Clubs Office was born, which is an in-house consultancy that LALIGA runs for all of its clubs, where I head the business infrastructure vertical. We work with clubs to help them maximise their stadium revenues and their other infrastructure revenues as much as possible. We work with the clubs in detail from A to Z in order to create strategies, products, promotion and pricing strategies that can be used to better commercialise their product portfolio.”

He continued: “Quite a few of the clubs, such as RCD Mallorca, Villarreal CF, Real Betis or Valencia CF, are using the BOOST LALIGA funds in order to improve their stadia and infrastructure. LALIGA’s infrastructure department works very closely with the clubs in the construction process, then my vertical works with clubs on specific consultancy for business planning and commercialisation.”

Breaking down the consultancy he provides, Nenadovic added: “We focus on three main topics: matchday, non-matchday and, third of all, we’re trying to get into monetising strategies for training grounds because the BOOST LALIGA project has been used for this purpose also.”

He proceeded to share a few case studies with the audience. One example of a matchday-related project is the way in which Nenadovic and his colleagues have worked with Sevilla FC to create a new hospitality product in the form of a rooftop terrace, which has a view of the pitch but also beyond. Sharing a non-matchday example with the audience, Nenadovic explained how he has worked with SD Eibar to help them get their business club events for local partners up and running at the club’s facilities.

The RCD Mallorca case study: Expanding the hospitality offering in a strategic way

The audience was also able to hear about the experience of RCD Mallorca direct from the club’s Chief Revenue Officer, Félix Torralba. The island club recently carried out an extensive redevelopment project at their Estadi Mallorca Son Moix.

On this, Torralba recalled: “We already had in mind what we needed to do and wanted to do and suddenly the BOOST LALIGA programme gave us the opportunity. We had a running track and we saw the opportunity to respond to the demand of the fans, which was to make the stadium a football stadium, to make it their home and to get rid of the running track.”

Not only did RCD Mallorca remove the running track and bring the front rows closer to the pitch, but they also installed several new hospitality and VIP areas and experiences, including: Footprint Tunnel Experience; Premium Seats – Player Walk Out; The Premium Club; Stadium Restaurant Experience; Presidential Lounge; VIP Box North; and VIP Box West. These have been very successful, and the club’s premium hospitality guests now have an average stay of four and a half hours at the venue.

There is something for all types of customers and this was by design. The Chief Revenue Officer explained: “When you work on adding hospitality experiences, what product is it? Who is it thought for? Are you differentiating them? We went up from 650 to 1,800 seats and it was not just putting them all out in the market. It was taking the right seats into the right market. We opened different conversations and opportunities with our potential customers and the results have been fantastic.”

Juventus’ experience: Downsizing and focusing on non-matchday experiences

There were also two directors on the call from Juventus FC, who moved in to their Allianz Stadium in 2011, a move which actually meant downsizing from the larger Stadio Delle Alpi. With the move, they too could improve their hospitality options and they also put a lot of focus on making the stadium and the surrounding area a place fans would want to visit every day, even collaborating on a project for a shopping centre to be built in the vicinity of the ground.

Francesco Gianello, the Italian club’s Head of Facilities Management, recalled: “The stadium had to be designed to be lived in seven days a week, so no more was the stadium just open during matchdays. It was designed for hosting non-matchday events.”

As Head of Stadium Revenue and Entertainment, Paolo Monguzzi oversees these events and stated: “More than 90% of stadium revenues come from matchday. We can try to further maximise revenues on ticketing and hospitality on matchday, looking better at the pricing and at the product, however I think that if we really would like to increase our revenues then we need to look better at non-matchday. The stadium has to be alive with events and services.”

That was the key message from this LALIGA Extra Time webinar, that stadiums are venues which can be used 365 days a year. There are many success stories of clubs doing exactly this, especially in Spain and especially with the help of the LALIGA Clubs Office.  

(This article originally appeared in Global Futbol, LaLiga’s monthly newsletter.)

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