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SMG brings Management Muscle to Reno-Sparks Venues

Jamie Bartosch
, News Editor
March 28, 2018
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SMG brings Management Muscle to Reno-Sparks Venues

By Jamie Bartosch, News Editor

RENO, Nev. — Starting in June, SMG will manage four of the major convention and entertainment facilities in the Reno area.

The Reno-Sparks Convention & Visitors Authority (RSCVA) Board of Directors announced March 23 that it has approved a four-year deal with SMG to operate the RSCVA-owned Reno-Sparks Convention Center (RSCC), the state-owned Reno-Sparks Livestock Events Center, and the city-owned Reno Events Center and National Bowling Stadium.

The agreement also includes culinary services through SMG’s in-house food and beverage division, under the company’s private brands.

According to board meeting minutes, RSCVA will pay SMG a $200,000 per year management fee, plus 6% of gross sales and 20% of profits in excess of $800,000 for food and beverage service. There are also a handful of incentive bonuses for improved profits and additional sponsorships.

The deal will allow the RSCVA to focus its attention on sales and marketing, while using SMG to improve the efficiency and customer service at its event venues, said RSCVA Communication Manager Ben McDonald.

SMG’s portfolio of clients and partners can potentially help bring additional trade shows, events and entertainment to the Reno area. Bringing in big name entertainment on a more regular basis is one of RSCVA’s goals. SMG’s relationships with companies like LiveNation could help them achieve that, McDonald said.

SMG manages more than 75 convention centers in North America. They also have 13 stadiums, 70 arenas and 67 theaters.

“It’s a great opportunity for our area,” McDonald said. “It’s a very exciting time.”

The Reno area’s largest facility, the 600,000-square-foot (sf) RSCC, might soon undergo a large-scale expansion. A feasibility study is being done on a 300,000-sf addition. The study is expected to be finished in late May or early June.

SMG has developed 30 new or expanded convention centers in the past 15 years, which could be a benefit during the expansion.

“They have decades of experience, and they bring in best practices from around the world,” McDonald said.

The RVCVA’s numbers have been increasing, and they’re on track to hit their goal of 260,000 room nights this fiscal year, McDonald added.

Contact Ben McDonald at (775) 827-7654 or


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