Q&A: Stockholm and Events

Sport Business News

MEI talks to the Stockholm Visitors Board's Annika Malhotra, project manager, events, on what makes the capital city of Sweden a must–visit location for the events industry.

What is/are your role and responsibilities? My role is to promote and do marketing for Stockholm as a world class city for major events (sports, culture & music). In four words: Attract events to Stockholm!I act like a speaking partner and assist federations with everything from presentations, permits and contacts with various departments, companies and administrators within the city and of course our network of experienced partners. Does Stockholm have a strategy for attracting major sports events? Yes we have, although we are now getting a new event strategy for Stockholm and that means that we will do a new methodic for attracting and to pinpoint for major sport events. With two new big arenas (Stockholmsarenan and Swedbank Arena) Stockholm will be able to attract Megaevents to Stockholm in a new and larger dimension. What are the main events that Stockholm hosts every year or has coming up this year and next? Our annual events are as follows:The Nobel PrizeDN GalanPolar Music PrizeStockholm MarathonWorld Water WeekStockholm Pride FestivalStockholm International FilmfestivalWinter Jam. Forthcoming events include:IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship 2012 & 2013The IFAF World Championship of American Football (also known as the IFAF World Cup)Ã...F Offshore race 2012Royal Palace Sprint, FIS World Cup sprint competition (Cross–country skiing) Challenge Bernadotte (fencing)NHL Hockey Primiere 2012Stadion 100 years celebration, GE Sports Gala. Are there any major sports events that you are currently bidding for? Yes€ªmany. But details of these are confidential!How important are cultural events to Stockholm? Cultural events are very important to Stockholm. Culture is one out of three main aspects that we are looking for. The other two are sports and music. As you can see on the list above there are many cultural events in Stockholm. How important are conferences and conventions to Stockholm? These are also very important to the city. Stockholm is one of top 10 cities in the world according to ICCA (International Congress & Convention Association). Stockholm for example is only one of five cities that can host the European Cardiology Congress (with approximately 30, 000 attendees). We have a convention bureau department with eight people working to attract meetings to Stockholm. How are events generally funded? The events are generally funded by the organisers themselves or/with sponsors. If it is an event organised by the City of Stockholm (like the Festival of Culture – open for the public) the city funds it itself. The City of Stockholm has also a fund for international marketing which the organisers can apply for. How does your region/city plan for legacy? Two of the main focuses in Stockholm are sustainability and environment. When we build arenas/houses today they have to be built with a sharp focus on sustainable and environmental focus. There are two new arenas being built in the region of Stockholm at the moment, Stockholmsarenan and Swedbank Arena. They are both contributing to the vision that Stockholm is – a world class city for events. But again the sustainability and the environmental policy is in focus€ª there will not be any overcapacity since the two new ones will replace two old smaller ones (not on the same spot). The sport mentality from the city of Stockholm is that everyone should have access and are welcome to the arenas to be able to practice their sport therefore most of the arenas are owned by the city and not private federations or clubs. It is a phenomenon all over Sweden. The thinking is more or less€ª join the movement. What else does Stockholm offer a visitor other than sport? The beauty, the food, the shopping, the music, the design, the history, the culture, the clean water€ª There are many reasons why Stockholm attracting ever–larger crowds of visitors. Stockholm is a metropolitan city, the largest city in Scandinavia and with 10m visitors also a natural place whether it is for business, sports, music and cultural events. Contact details:Stockholm Visitors BoardP. O. Box 16282SE–103 25 StockholmVisiting address: Drottninggatan 33Ph +46 (0)8 508 28 000www. visitstockholm. com

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