Ex-Etihad Stadium boss Paul Sergeant bows new venture
Australian venue veteran Paul Sergeant has announced the formation of Paul Sergeant Events (PSE), a Melbourne-based event management company specialising in securing and promoting niche events in Australia.
Sergeant – a former head of several major Australian and international venues, including Wembley Stadium, Qudos Bank Arena (formerly Allphones Arena), Suncorp Stadium and, most recently, Etihad Stadium – says his mission statement for PSE is to support the “array of quality, niche event content around the world that is seeking to expand beyond its own boundaries, but doesn’t necessarily have the resources or knowledge to take on a move into Australia”.
The new company will also provide advisory services to the rights-owners of fringe sports events and venues in Austria, who “often require a helping hand to support their growth”.
At PSE, Sergeant (pictured), who stepped down as CEO of Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium last year, is joined by CFO Chris Charleson, head of commercial Sarah Brady and head of operations Glen Rainsbury. “I’ve always worked on the basis that you need to know where the talented people are, and these people are among the best in the industry here in Australia,” he explains. “Chris, Sarah and Glen are highly respected across the sport and entertainment business internationally. They know what they’re doing, have immense experience and aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeves and make things happen.”
Charleston is a former COO/CFO of ticketing market leader Ticketek, while Brady headed up consumer business departments at sports clubs including the Brisbane Lions, South Sydney Rabbitohs and GWS Giants. Rainsbury, meanwhile, has held sales and operation roles at Brisbane Entertainment Centre and the Gabba cricket ground, as well as the Royal Horticultural Society and the Chelsea and Hampton Court flower shows in London.
“These are exciting times for a new business”
Most recently, they formed the core management team at the 53,359-capacity Etihad Stadium. “During the three and a half years we worked together, we secured and successfully delivered a vast array of massive international events,” continues Sergeant, “including the world record breaking UFC 193, Australian Speedway Grand Prix, Edinburgh Military Tattoo and concerts by Coldplay, Adele, Foo Fighters, Taylor Swift and many others.
“In addition to delivering major events, we were also integral to many varied improvements and developments at the venue. Because of our experience, catering, technology and playing surface improvements were among the many areas that made significant progress under our watch – and this expertise is now available for others to tap into.”
“Of course, none of this success is possible without the support of a wide network of others. We have had the benefit of working with a vast number of staff, freelance operators and other specialist organisations. We’re well networked across the globe and know who to turn to when we need to when it comes to delivering successful projects anywhere across Australia and New Zealand.”
While Sergeant’s main focus will be in the new business, he retains his role as a board member of PMY Group.
“These are exciting times for a new business,” he concludes, “and we anticipate making announcements about several projects in the coming months.”
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