In the coming years large investments are expected to be made in the European football stadiums market. This is concluded by KPMG and the German architects group GMP in the report ‘A blueprint for Successful Stadium Development’. Two causes are at the root of this phenomenon: existing stadiums are getting really old and football clubs increasingly understand the extra commercial potential modern stadiums have to offer.
Europe currently has circa 330 stadiums with a capacity of 20.000 or more. UK leads the pack with 54 venues, followed by Germany (47), Italy (35) and Spain (29). The Netherlands has 9 stadiums belonging to the category ‘large’.
Looking at age, KPMG and GMP conclude that a large part of stadiums meanwhile is 35 or older. In some countries the average tenure of stadiums is even more than 53 years, such as Italy, Belgium and UK. The Netherlands scores in the mid-range, the average building year for its stadiums falls within 1960 – 1980, meaning they are in between 33 and 53 years old. Countries for which large stadiums are best in class include Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden and Portugal.
Out of the analysis researchers conclude that the stadium market is awaiting a large investment boom. This because football clubs look at modernizing their facilities for staff, players and fans. In addition, the investigators state that building a new stadium or refurnishing an existing stadium provides large benefits in the area of commerce. "Dated stadiums no longer meet the expectations of contemporary users in general, and the business segment in general” says Hans Grönloh, partner at KPMG. This is concluded from an analysis that new stadiums anticipate on wishes from the business segment for premium seating or even VIP boxes.
The commercial gain is not only restricted to more money from premium seating. For example, the selling of season and day cards is stimulated by better viewpoints on the field and also a modern stadium offers more opportunities in the field of nomenclature-sponsoring, company meetings, tours through the stadium, catering and turnover from mobile/app services.