Lindley Venue Catering has won an £8.2m contract with Sheffield Wednesday Football Club to provide matchday catering and hospitality services at Hillsborough Stadium.
The five-year deal, which has a further two-year extension option, will also see Lindley provide conference and banqueting, and non-matchday events business at the League One club's 39,812 capacity ground when it takes over the site at the start of the new season.
The services were previously operated in-house during the 2010/2011 season, but following the acquisition of the club by former Leicester City and Portsmouth owner Milan Mandaric, the business was put out to tender.
Lindley was invited to tender having managed public kiosks at Hillsborough when Sheffield Wednesday FC was under previous ownership.
The caterer, the sports stadia division of Lindley Group, is tasked with developing a new hospitality-focused website as part of the package of sales and marketing initiatives and new ideas being introduced to boost revenue from non-matchday business. Particular emphasis is placed on increasing conference and banqueting sales.
Lindley is also launching new concepts, retail branding and meal deals aimed at increasing the per capita spend on the public concourse on matchdays by encouraging customers to buy food and beverages at the stadium and uplift their spend.
Adam Elliott, chief executive of Lindley Group, said that the variety, flexibility and high calibre of the facilities at Hillsborough, provides tremendous scope for developing the catering, events and hospitality business at the stadium.
"We feel very privileged to have been chosen to work with SWFC to maximise the revenue potential that can be derived from bringing new non-matchday business to their home ground," he said.
"We recently launched a new website for another of our football club clients and through optimisation of the site, their conference and banqueting sales have increased by 20% and we are confident that we can achieve similar levels of uplift at Hillsborough."
Paul Aldridge, SWFC's vice chairman, said: "The 2011-12 season ahead marks the start of a new era in Sheffield Wednesday's 144-year history and we have great ambitions for the club - both on and off the pitch.
"During the tender process the team at Lindley demonstrated that it shares our vision and has the passion, commitment and sales and marketing expertise to attract new business and at the same time, enhance the matchday catering experience for our fans and corporate hospitality guests."
By Janie Stamford
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