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Manchester Arena Is Second Busiest Arena In The World

Strong 2011 as venue seeks new new sponsor

Written by . Published on January 25th 2012.


Manchester Arena Is Second Busiest Arena In The World

THE Manchester Arena has been officially recognised as the second busiest venue in the world following the publication of ticket figures for 2011.

Industry publication Pollstar reported over 1.2 million ticketholders for entertainment events at the Manchester venue last year, an increase of 12 per cent on 2010.

“In both number of ticketholders and variety of events this is a tremendous achievement."

The O2 Arena in London took top spot, with more than 1.9 million tickets sold, and the Sportpaleis Arena in Antwerp, Belgium, took third spot, with 714,000 tickets.

The arena is owned by Development Securities and is operated by SMG Europe. The latter is currently leading the search to find a new sponsor for the building after a 13-year relationship with the Manchester Evening News ended last year.

John Knight, general manager for the Manchester Arena, said: “In both number of ticketholders and variety of events this is a tremendous achievement.

“2011 has seen some incredibly high-profile performances at the venue including the return of Peter Kay for his final 20-night residency, sold out shows by Coldplay, Paul McCartney and Rihanna and the world premiere of Batman Live and European premiere of Glee Live.

“We’re now looking forward to another strong 12 months with multiple nights already selling strong for X Factor Live, JLS, Westlife and Michael McIntyre amongst others.

“We also welcome another world ‘first’ with the international premiere of Street of Dreams, the Coronation Street live musical event, plus the return of Pearl Jam after the band chose the Manchester venue for their only indoor UK shows of 2012.”

SMG would not comment on a new sponsor although industry sources claim it has attracted interest from several large national firms, and a deal could be done in the first half of 2012.

No value has been put on any potential cost to interested parties, although a recent deal between the SECC Glasgow Arena and Scottish Hydro was worth £1.5m a year for 10 years.

O2 sponsors the former Millennium Dome for £6m a year.

The full top ten:

London O2 Arena - 1.9m tickets

Manchester Arena - 1.2m 

Sportpaleis Antwerpen - 714,000

Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne - 706,000

O2 Dublin - 670,000

Palais Omnisports Paris - 659,000

Staples Center, Los Angeles - 633,000

Madison Square Garden, New York - 616,000

Air Canada Centre, Toronto - 582,000

LG Arena, Birmingham - 561,000

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Calum McGJanuary 26th 2012.

Woop, woop! Go, Manchester!

Calum McGJanuary 26th 2012.

I mean "Go Manchester!". Durrrr.

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