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A hat-trick for Sodexo Prestige


Jun 24, 2010 | Editors

This year's Stadium Experience's Official Football Hospitality Awards 2010 were "all in all a very successful night" for Sodexo Prestige, with the company scoring a hat-trick of wins after picking up the directors' choice awards in three categories.

As well as netting the directors' accolades, Sodexo Prestige - the hospitality and banqueting arm of Sodexo – also won the bronze award for its chef teams, the company's head of non matchday sales at Everton Football Club, Tony Watson noted.

Tony, who is also chairman of awards organiser Stadium Experience, explained: "Stadium Experience sent a judge from Salon Culinaire to judge the matchday hospitality, and it sent letters to every director in the leagues to ask what they thought of the hospitality they received."

The directors were obviously impressed with Sodexo Prestige, with the bosses in the Champions League, the Scottish Premier League and Premier League voting that the company's operations at Everton, Newcastle United and Aberdeen Football Clubs provided the best hospitality in their categories.

A focus on quality is the driving force behind Sodexo Prestige's wins, Tony said.

"I think quality of food, quality of service and a dedication to improving year-on-year has meant that Sodexo has been very successful at this year's awards."

Stadium Experience promotes football clubs as venues for conferences and other events and Tony believes stadiums offer numerous advantages for event organisers.

"I think, in every major city, football stadiums are well-located and they have good parking.

"They offer great catering – on a matchday, they are used to catering for 2,000 or 3,000 people in one go – so they find it very easy to cope with a conference or event. They offer flexible events bases and they tend to be at a very good rate," he noted.

But, Sodexo Prestige's focus is not solely on football grounds. As well as its operations at football clubs, the company also offers event services at historic attractions, such as the Churchill War Rooms and HMS Belfast.

These venues can cater for "everything from team-building events to banquets for 1,000, down to meetings for ten people", he said, adding that the customer's needs are always at the heart of Sodexo Prestige's services.

"In many of our venues, we are the people that are selling the products. This means that you get a 100 per cent-focus on customer service from start to finish."

"So, as well as delivering the food, we sell you the product, which means we are able to achieve, if not exceed, an event organiser's or company's expectation."

Having a global presence has also helped ensure the success of the company.

"We're a multinational company; we have over 350,000 staff and we're able to share our experiences and grow on the basis of that."

It hasn't all been smooth sailing, especially over the last few years, but Tony is optimistic about the future.

"I think every business has found the recession challenging. But, Sodexo is good at being adaptable and everyone has just worked harder and smarter and this has meant that we've continued to grow as a business."

"The teams as a whole at Sodexo are very focused on food quality, standards of service and continual improvement of what they offer. Because of this, year-on-year, the Sodexo teams continue to represent well," he concluded. ADNFCR-1752-ID-19855895-ADNFCR

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