Australasia News: APAC’s Worton Steps Down; VMA Awards; Ticket Platform Problems; NZ: New Stadium Design Revealed

Tim Worton pic
A HIGHER CALLING: Tim Worton is stepping down as ASM Global (APAC) Group’s director of arenas after 25 years to begin studies at Moore Theological College in Sydney, Australia.


ASM Global’s Tim Worton Stepping Down

Tim Worton, ASM Global (APAC) Group’s director of arenas, is stepping down at the end of 2024 after 25 years with the company.

He begins studies at Moore Theological College in Sydney, with the goal of a pastoral, chaplaincy or ministry role.

Citing the growth of the group’s arena business in Australia and the Asia-Pacific region “through innovation and ongoing development of entertainment content,” ASM Global (APAC) chairman and chief executive Harvey Lister said, “Tim has been a great ambassador for our organisation. He has made an admirable and life changing decision to follow his faith and we applaud his decision and wish him well.”

Worton’s announcement was made at the 31st Asia Pacific Venue Industry Congress held at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre.

VMA Announces Industry Awards

The Venue Management Association (VMA) unveiled its 2024 industry winners at the Asia Pacific Venue Industry Congress in Brisbane.

Venue professional of the year was Peter Bauchop, chief operating officer, VenuesWest.
The allied professional gong went to Cameron Hoy, TEG’s COO and head of global ticketing.
Tyrie Wilkinson, safety & resilience coordinator at Melbourne Cricket Club took young achiever.

Lifetime achievement went to Judy Vince, group general manager at Crown Theatres, while honorary life membership was bestowed on ASM Global’s Tim Worton.

Report Shows Issues With Legacy Ticketing Platforms

A new report showed up to 79% of Aussies think ticket prices for live music and sporting events are too expensive.

But demand remains high, with 81% attending at least one in the past year; 44% for one to three a year, and a quarter making it to four to 11 events per year.

Despite increased cost of living, 35% still spend over A$100 ($66.28) per ticket on average.
The majority (67%) buy event tickets through major ticketing companies; 20% opt for event websites and 11% for venue websites.

But they have transparency grievances, said the May 27 report commissioned by software-as-a-service (SaaS) ticketing software model Eventfinda TixSuite, which entered the Australian market in March aimed as a disrupter.

Highest on the list of grievances was “junk” fees, which they have to buy at point of sales, but which only 40% understand their purposes; 72% “agree” or “strongly agree” they’d be more accepting of ticketing fees if there was more transparency around why they were charged.

Other common complaints were high waiting times, hidden costs, ticketing websites crashing, “delivery” fees being charged for e-tickets, and scalpers listing tickets that are fake or charging exorbitant prices on resale websites.Eventfinda TixSuite CEO James McGlinn said: “This research confirms our thoughts: ticketing in Australia is broken and ripe for disruption, with trust in ticketing providers running low.”


Stadium Contender Unveils New Design

One of the four contenders to build Auckland’s sports and entertainment stadium released new designs before Adelaide Council made its decision in June.

The Wynyard Point Stadium Project consortium revealed its 55,000-seat venue at the waterfront Wynyard Quarter is part of a wider complex including an indoor arena and an amphitheater to view harbor events as sailing competitions.

Speaking on Auckland radio, consortium head Richard Dellabarca called its bid the most cost-effective, its location one of the “best sites in the world,” adding, “we’ve got the best stadium designers in the world.”

The bid has the backing of JP Morgan, while another bid, the waterfront Quarry Park/Te Tōangaroa, has Goldman Sachs in its corner.

The other bids are a redevelopment of Eden Park, and a “sunken stadium” in Waitematā Harbor with a floating roof above sea level.