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part of the team! Involvement with 
players and coaches is key!

Grounds Managers in Germany, don’t 
hide yourselves away. Get out there 
and engage to benefit you, your 
profession and the gam

Sebastian Breuing, Head Grounds 
Manager Vfl Bochum, Germany

  500 matches a year? It’s all about 
setting goals! Impossible is not 
something that can’t be done. It is 
just something that hasn’t been 
done yet!

We don’t always get to make 
the decisions. ESSMA has given 
additional strength and support to 
the stadium grounds manager

Jerad Minnick,  
Maryland Soccerplex, USA

We organize birthday parties to 
create true fans for the future; this 
is of great value in the long term 
for our club.

Ricardo Carvalho, Stadium Manager 
FC Porto, Portugal

ESSMA aims to raise the profile of 
pitch management and improve 
communication with stadium 
managers and other stakeholders. 

 It was a new experience to me when 
the PSG doctors came up and said 
thanks for getting the number of 
players’ injuries down.

Jonathan Calderwood, Head Grounds 
Manager Paris St. Germain, France

Following on from the European Stadium Insight 
thought leadership published in 2011, KPMG’s 
Sports Advisory practice has teamed up with gmp 
Architects – a global leader in stadium architecture 
– to compile a new publication: A Blueprint for 
Successful Stadium Development. The scope 
of this report is to guide developers, clubs, 
associations and public authorities through the 
stadium development process.
Baku Crystal Hall 
– Baku, Azerbaijan
Planned and built in less than a year 
thanks to the utilisation of a modular 
construction, Baku Crystal Hall 
is a spectacular 25,000-capacity 
indoor arena. Opened in April 
2012, Baku Crystal Hall is already 
regarded as a new icon landmark of 
Azerbaijan’s capital.
Average age and distribution 
of 20,000+ capacity stadiums.
Note: Stadium age denoted by year of opening and 
excludes major renovations. Collection in some 
countries was limited by the lack of available data, 
and may not exactly reflect the situation.
Source: KPMG Analysis
urope has an ageing stadium 
population. The vast majority of 
facilities were built more than four or 
even five decades ago. These venues 
are often outdated and unable to meet 
the expectations of today’s supporters, 
notably the corporate segment. The 
vast proportion of these stadiums is 
owned by the public sector. However, 
trends appear to show privately-owned 
stadiums outperforming publicly-
owned ones. This is mainly due to the 
fact that publicly-owned stadiums of 
top European clubs are typically old, 
whilst some of the privately-owned 
stadiums have been recently built with 
great attention to revenue generating 
potential. Successful clubs aim to 
gain more control over their venues, 
which in turn is a key factor in stadium 
commercialisation, leading to a positive 
effect on operational incomes. 
With many stadiums now 
outdated, the need for new 
developments is unlikely to decrease 
and indeed further development 
in Europe is anticipated, especially 
as economic recovery takes root. 
Therefore the lessons of what can 
be done to increase the chances of 
successful stadium development are as 
important today as they have ever been.
The successful 
stadium development 
No two stadium projects are the 
same; however, the basic process 
by which stadiums are developed 
can be divided into five distinct 
phases. These are the development 
of a project vision; the planning and 
feasibility assessment; the permitting 
and design phase; the construction; 
and the hand over to operations. It is 
therefore of paramount importance to 
understand perfectly the interlinking 
relationship between different phases 
and expertise involved in order to 
guarantee the successful realisation of 
a new stadium development, or a major 
venue reconstruction.
Due to the high complexity and 
technicalities involved in a project such 
as a stadium, it is critical to engage – at 
the right time and at different stages 

of development – the right technical 
specialists and experienced personnel. 
A well-managed process not only will 
allow the timely implementation of the 
development phases within budget and 
according to set standards and project 
objectives, but will also support the long-
term sustainability of the new venue.
Ideally the process should allow for the 
varied requirements of stakeholders 
to be factored into the development 
from the beginning. Moving forward 
without such a process can leave 
stadium owners with multiple problems 
during development and, even more 
importantly, when the facility becomes 
operational. In the past, numerous 
promoters have been guilty of not 
selecting the right site, not considering 
and researching the local market, 
building too large a stadium or not having 
sufficient premium seating, hospitality 
and retail facilities, and thereby missing 
revenue earning opportunities. These 
are all factors that are avoidable if the 
appropriate expertise is involved at the 
right time and in the right order.
Understanding spectators’ changing 
needs and requirements is of paramount 
importance for developing a venue capable 
of maximising fan engagement, the 
commercial opportunities deriving from 
a modern stadium and, consequently, the 
project stakeholders’ return.
Technology is now having a major impact 
on the way stadiums are operated; the 
potential revenue flows and the demands 
of consumers – the way spectators 
consume the match experience in a 
modern football stadium has changed 
significantly in recent years and will 
change even faster in the next decade.
The increased use of technology means 
that stadium operators now have to 
compete with broadcasters who provide 
ground-breaking 3D experiences and 
state-of-the-art media platforms, 
capable of engaging fans from their 
own living rooms or through various 
communications devices. For stadium 
managers the challenge is how to bring 
the ‘living room’ experience into the 
venue in order to retain and grow a 
supporter base which is increasingly 
technologically minded. 
Stadiums can be key revenue generating 
assets for football clubs, valuable 
assets on clubs’ balance sheets and 
can play a central role in achieving 
financially sustainable long-term 
success. However, they are highly capital 
intensive, as even a relatively small 
facility with 15,000-20,000 seats may 
cost well over EUR 20 million. Stadium 
development is a complex process that 
can span several years. Strict planning 
of the interlinked activities is required 
to make the development efficient and 
effective and to ensure maximisation of 
opportunities is achieved.
Key phases, milestones and timings involved in the development process.
Source: KPMG
Architects: gmp · von Gerkan, 
Marg and Partners  / Nüssli / Alpine
Photo: Marcus Bredt

Whilst the on-pitch results of a football 
team and its financial performance are 
inextricably linked, commercialisation 
of a modern stadium is a controllable 
factor that can change the long-term 
dynamics of a club, and hence support 
the business in achieving sustainable 
future success. However, the role of 
commercialising a stadium as an asset 
for a club is often not well understood. 
Analysis of match day revenues of 
clubs across Europe paint a picture 
of dramatic contrasts, reflecting the 
unrealised business opportunity for 
football clubs in many countries, for 
example Italy and France. It is therefore 
fundamentally important to think at 
an early stage of development which 
stadium management model and 
agreement fits the capabilities and risk 
taking profile of the stadium owner.
The enhancement of traditional 
sources of operating revenues from 
new stadium development or the 
major renovation of an older venue is 
stimulated by an increase in the sale of 
season and match day tickets through 
better views, higher comfort and family 
stands. Simultaneously, a modern 
venue allows the exploitation of new 
and alternative key revenue drivers 
such as naming rights, hospitality areas, 
premium seats, catering, corporate 
events, stadium tours and museums.
Although the financial success of a 
stadium development relies upon a 
large and loyal fan base which can 
guarantee stable cash flows, a robust 
business plan is a key foundation to a 
new stadium development or renovation 
programme. Therefore, during the 
business planning and feasibility 
assessment phase – besides legal, 
urban planning and site availability 
issues – market, financing and operating 
aspects of the proposed stadium 
development should be carefully 
analysed. The ultimate goal of this task 
is to assess the overall feasibility of 
the project and to support the activities 
conducted by other professionals 
in subsequent phases such as, for 
example, the architects in the stadium 
design phase. The preliminary planning 
and feasibility phase will provide indeed 
a basis for the concept brief and the 
starting point for the design process.
Design for success
With the evolution of modern 
architectural design, stakeholders 
are able to achieve a venue of higher 
comfort, integrating innovative 
solutions such as retractable roof and 
temporary seating, allowing for multi-
use functionality. More often stadiums 
National Stadium 
– Warsaw, Poland
Built between 2008 and 2011 
for the UEFA EURO 2012, the 
55,000-capacity Warsaw National 
Stadium is regarded as one of the 
most modern venues in Europe. 
The lightweight retractable roof 
construction can bear heavy snow 
loads, even when closed in the 
winter. Daylight shines through the 
translucent roof membrane almost 
unobstructed onto the stands. 
The inner roof, also made out of a 
membrane textile, can open or close 
in 15 minutes.
are built as iconic landmarks, defining 
city skylines with innovative design. 
Especially when integrated in mixed-use 
developments, they can play a key role 
in urban regeneration and the trend of 
stadiums returning to inner city areas is 
one that we might expect to see more 
of in the future. 
Increasingly, stadiums are being built for 
mega events in countries and cities with 
undeveloped or developing domestic 
football markets, resulting in significant 
legacy issues with, in some cases, 
drastically underutilised venues. There 
is a need to put an end to uncontrolled 
investments with little, if any, business 
rationale. The implementation of 
modular and temporary stadium 
construction is a way of, at least 
partially, adapting the stadium capacity 
to expected demand beyond the 
respective major event.
The importance to adopt environmental 
sustainability practices is globally 
recognised as a key element of stadium 
development, therefore implementing 
these practices during construction 
and in operation falls under the 
responsibility of all stakeholders.
In conclusion, although team 
performance, market and economic 
conditions will always remain critical, 
experience demonstrates that scenarios 
repeatedly arise in which state-of-the-
art new build facilities assist football 
clubs to discover and activate latent 
demand. This can create additional 
revenue generating opportunities and 
serve as a platform for sustainable 
business growth.
If you would 
like to receive 
information or 
to discuss the 
findings of this 
study, please 
Andrea Sartori 
KPMG Sports 
Head of European Sports Network
t: +36 1 887 7215 
e: AndreaSartori@KPMG.com
Hubert Nienhoff 
Partner, gmp Architect 
Dipl.-Ing. Architect
t: +49 30 617 855 
e: berlin@gmp-architekten.de
To request a copy of A Blueprint for 
Successful Stadium Development
please e-mail:  
More information
Architects: gmp · von Gerkan, 
Marg and Partners / local JSK
Photo: Marcus Bredt
Two key elements to the success of 
new stadium development are a robust 
business plan, backed by detailed 
market analysis and creative thinking; 
and innovative design. n

KPMG’s Sports Advisory practice, with gmp 
Architects, has launched a new publication:
A Blueprint for 
Successful Stadium 
The report provides an analytical overview 
of the complex stadium development 
process and its strong link to the 
maximisation of future revenue. 
To request a copy of
the report, please e-mail 
Andrea Sartori
Partner, Head of KPMG
European Sports Network
T.: +36 1 887 7215
E.: AndreaSartori@kpmg.com
Hubert Nienhoff
Partner, gmp
T: +49 30 617 855
E.: berlin@gmp-architekten.de
© 2013 KPMG Tanácsadó Kft., a Hungarian limited liability company and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent 
member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.
The KPMG name, logo and “cutting through complexity” are registered trademarks or trademarks of KPMG International.  
r L
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Get in the 
Web-based, software as 
a service eliminates the 
need for complex onsite 
IT management and costly 
infrastructure investments. 
Score Big with 
Small Details
Getting the space right is only half 
the battle. Real relationships mean 
knowing a client’s preferences, 
down to the brand of water they 
want off-stage or on the sidelines. 
Get those little details right, and 
you’ll move to the top of the list 
the next time a promoter has an 
act coming to town. 
Get Interactive
Offer event specific microsites 
and mobile apps for a seamless 
event experience – and an 
additional revenue stream.
Calm in a Crisis
During a natural or man-made disaster, people 
turn to the web for information.  
For timely updates, you’ll need access to:
•   Website
•  Social media
•  Cross department information & connectivity
From big to small: 
why size no 
longer matters 
Venues of every size 
have the same needs for 
behind the scenes event 
management technology, 
writes Justin Ungerboeck.
any large stadiums and arenas 
have entire teams dedicated to 
filling their venues with non-traditional 
events during the offseason, turning 
dark days into profit centres. One tool 
these giants have in their arsenal is 
a robust event management system 
that includes sales, marketing, CRM, 
event planning and management, 
service orders, facility maintenance and 
management, and the list goes on.
Historically, smaller venues – with 
fewer staff members to dedicate to 
the cause, and quite frankly, smaller 
Be Online
Promote your venue, let promoters and 
event planners go online to request the 
dates, times and spaces that work best for 
their events, so your team spends less time 
fielding inquiries and more time on the tasks 
that require a personal touch. 

Staff on Hand
When you know which staff members work 
best with different types of events, you’ll 
always deliver white glove-level service.  
Real-Time Reports
A centralized database that allows 
you to see up to date details 
from initial contact through final 
billing, settlement and reports, 
insures that nothing slips through 
the cracks. 
CRM & Sales
By putting all your 
customer, event and sales 
information in a single, 
powerful platform, you 
spend less time entering, 
tracking down and 
reconciling data–and more 
time selling, planning, 
and implementing 
stellar events. 
Lose the Paper & 
Go Green
Online portals for suppliers, 
sponsors, advertisers and service 
providers eliminates the need for 
paperwork… and paper waste. 
Clean It Up
If you can easily see how much 
trash is generated by an event, 
you can figure out ways to reduce 
waste, increase recycling, and gain 
green-focused sponsorships. 
budgets – haven’t been able to use 
these comprehensive software 
systems because they don’t have 
the event or IT staff, or the budgets 
for the infrastructure and purchase 
requirements. But the landscape 
is changing.
A new class of SaaS
Today, with the increasing availability 
of Software as a Service (SaaS) those 
barriers are dropping away. For 
instance, Ungerboeck Software’s most 
recent release is web-based, meaning 
Manage and Minimize 
Bumps & Bruises
Learn how many slips, falls, and 
injuries happen to forecast better 
safety & security measures, and 
reduce overall risk.

Events on the field are only part of the experience. The 
details that happen behind the scenes, prior to and after 
special events can create game-changing results for 
event promoters, your staff and your bottom line.

Justin Ungerboeck
there’s no longer a need to purchase 
servers to host the software, nor is 
there a need for onsite IT expertise. 
The SaaS pricing model allows for a 
lower cost of entry for clients able to 
accept a primarily off-the-shelf product 
developed using best practices

from some of the most well-known and 
well-run venues around the globe.
Currently, venues of a certain size 
feel like they must rely on separate 
platforms for customer relationship 
management (CRM), sales, registration, 
event management, logistics, etc. 
because simple, one-purpose tools 
are traditionally less expensive than 
a comprehensive system. The SaaS 
model of software delivery allows 
nearly any venue to purchase just the 
software components they need, with 
the opportunity to expand as their 
needs grow. For instance, Ungerboeck 
Software offers dozens of modules 
that are connected by a single, airtight 
database, giving event managers 
game-changing insight and control into 
their events. A small venue with an 
event business that can’t reach its full 
potential with separate disconnected 
tools may opt in to just three of 
Ungerboeck’s modules like CRM, 
booking, and event management, then 
choose to add additional modules as 
event business and budgets grow.
Run with the big dogs
The most exciting thing about the 
increased availability Ungerboeck 
Software as a SaaS product is the 
ability for venues of any size to get off 
the porch and run with the big dogs 
when competing for non-traditional 
event revenues. 
There is always a great case for a 
venue to have a strong backend system 
regardless of the venue’s size.
Disparate systems
never meant to work together 
– lost info, manual data entry, 
expensive redundancy
Single system
replaces three or more – big time savings, 
unprecedented access to data, huge gains 
in efficiency

Ungerboeck Software International
PanStadia Ad – full page fall issue

wide range of athletic floor 
systems exist, some for general 
purpose while others are targeted to 
specific athletic activities. Let’s look 
at the desired playing characteristics 
and performance standards to be 
considered when selecting a basketball 
floor system. Selecting the right athletic 
floor system for your facility requires 
a time investment, but your investment 
will be rewarded with the knowledge 
that you researched and considered the 
many products available and selected 
the hardwood floor system that best 
fits your players’ needs, and facility and 
budget requirements.
Researching floor systems is equally 
important for both new construction 
and renovation. Renovation projects 
bring additional challenges to the 
process simply because of the 
The most desired traits owners have 
expressed they want when selecting a 
hardwood athletic floor system are: 
  a floor that is safe
   athletic performance confirmed by 
independent agency testing
  aesthetically pleasing
  an exceptional service life span.
Benefits of maple
Aesthetically, maple delivers a 
hardwood court that is instantly 
recognised by players, fans, and 
observers alike from the many years 
of televised professional and collegiate 
basketball. Maple has been the 
preferred surface for basketball since 
the game’s inception because of its light 
colour that highlights the court playing 
surface. Maple’s light colour allows 
constraints of the existing facility and 
the current slab depression. With 
a renovation project, it is critical to 
determine by site examination the floor 
system currently installed, the existing 
product’s profile height, and any special 
demolition concerns. We recommend a 
small opening be made in the existing 
floor system in a corner or off court 
area so the exact conditions can be 
inspected and a concise plan of action 
and product selection can be made. 
With this information confirmed, you 
can determine what new systems have 
matching profile heights out of the 
manufacturers’ product portfolios, and 
if any demolition challenges exist. On 
the other hand, a new facility offers a 
blank canvas; the slab depression can be 
constructed to accommodate the profile 
of the floor system selected. 
Boo Williams Sports Complex, 
Hampton, Virginia, USA.
Selecting your 
basketball floor
Ron Fenhaus, Vice President – Sales, Action Floor Systems, LLC

players to quickly and easily identify 
game lines, maximising the action 
rather than instigating player reaction 
on surfaces that are darker or offer 
poor contrast. 
The light colour of maple enhances 
interior lighting; light- coloured maple 
flooring reflects light versus darker 
woods or coloured synthetics that 
absorb light, thus requiring additional 
lights or higher powered bulbs to 
achieve the same light levels. The maple 
lumber used by Action to produce 
flooring is grown north of the 38th 
parallel. The short growing season 
produces maple flooring with a fine 
dense cellular structure that has a 
lustrous appearance when finished 
and delivers flexibility, resiliency, 
and durability. 
Maple athletic floors deliver an 
exceptional lifecycle, with a service 
life unmatched in the athletic 
flooring industry. The Maple Flooring 
Manufacturers Association (MFMA) 
projects a typically maintained 25/32” 
thick northern maple hardwood floor 
will have an average lifecycle exceeding 
50 years, and many floor installations 
exceed that estimate. Northern hard 
maple was first used in sports flooring 
in North America at the turn of the 
nineteenth century; no other athletic 
flooring material possesses the lineage 
and lifecycle of maple flooring. No 
wonder northern hard maple has 
earned the moniker “The Preferred 
Sports Surface”.
Action systems are tested by 
independent accredited testing agencies 
to exceed EN-14904, ASTM-F2772, 
MFMA-PUR, and DIN 18032 Part-2 
standards, recognised around the 
world as the foundation for athletic 
floor system performance criteria. 
The comprehensive testing completed 
by Action ensures that our ongoing 
system research and development, 
along with the continuous revaluation 
and improvement of existing systems, 
meet and exceed the performance 
requirements for athletic floor systems. 
The performance of Action’s maple 
athletic floor systems are confirmed 
as the extensive product families 
meet or exceed the requirements of 
Federation Internationale de Basketball 
(FIBA) for Competition Level 1 – the 
highest FIBA basketball performance 
criteria for both portable and permanent 
floor installations.
Consider the player 
What about the player? What will they 
be experiencing on a new court? What 
are their expectations? What would 
they say is important to them? These 
questions are often bypassed when 
a new floor is being discussed and 
researched since the players are seldom 
brought into the selection process. 
Floor systems that are comfortable and 
consistent in feel and ball bounce rate 
high on players ‘like’ lists. How does one 
define comfortable? For basketball in 
general, this will be a floor system that 
delivers a minimum of 53 percent shock 
absorption, will have a ball   

 Peformance. Appearance. Endurance.

Call us at 715-476-3512
Find out more at 
fast              break
Action NitroPanel
 portables ensure quick transitions 
for players, facilities and arena managers.
Scope Arena
Norfolk, Virginia USA
2013 Action Floor Systems, LLC
2683 FastBreak_Scope 210mmx297mm.indd   1
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return (bounce) of 93 percent minimum, 
and a minimum deflection of 2.3 mm on 
the point where the athlete impacts the 
floor during a stride. 
So why do players embrace one floor 
over a similar floor when both meet 
the same basic performance criteria? A 
missing component in some performance 
standards is uniformity. What is the 
allowable deviation range (+/- shock 
absorption, ball return, or deflection) 
between the test points? The MFMA-
PUR standards address this with the 
requirement for shock absorption 
and ball return at a maximum of 5% 
deviation range between the test points 
and 0.5 mm between deflection test 
points. Maple athletic floor systems that 
meet the more stringent performance 
uniformity criteria rate higher with 
players’ positive feedback. Action’s 
research, development, and ongoing 
performance testing programme is 
focused on designing and engineering 
floor systems that meet these user-
preferred, correct-feel performance 
standards and more difficult 
industry criteria. 
For the owner and architect, one of 
the more difficult tasks in the process 
of selection is matching various 
performance standards and the results. 
Most manufacturers are willing to 
provide support information about 
their system, the independent testing 
conducted, and the performance criteria 
their systems meet. Taking this a step 
further, the MFMA will issue a third 
party confirmation to facility owners 
and architects of systems of a MFMA 
Mill Manufacturer Member that are 
certified compliant to the MFMA-PUR 
Performance Standards. This is a unique 
and progressive method, having the 
test results for each individual system 
confirmed by a third party. With this 
tool, it is easy to confirm the maple 
athletic floor systems being researched 
are equal in performance. With nine 
system or system variations available 
in both floating and anchored resilient 
systems, Action is leading the industry in 
championing system uniformity.
Maple floors have long been the king of 
the hardwood court and will continue 
that dominance long into the future 
due to the wood’s appearance and 
performance. Maple is a renewable 
resource; in fact, more hardwood 
(maple) exists today in North America 
than in 1950. Action Floor Systems, 
LLC is committed to managing our 
The author
Ron Fenhaus is Vice President of 
Sales at Action Floor Systems, LLC, 
a company that specialises in high-
performance sports floor systems 
to accommodate any application. 
Action’s headquarters and 
manufacturing plant are in Mercer, 
Wisconsin. For more information, 
visit www.actionfloors.com or 
contact Action Floor Systems LLC, 
4781 North U.S. Highway 51, Mercer, 
WI 54547-9708 USA, 715.476.3512, 
Fax: 715.476.3585, e-mail:  
resources and minimising our impact on 
the ecosystem by following sustainable 
practices for growing and harvesting 
lumber while promoting the reuse of our 
wood fibre waste and reducing our need 
for fossil fuels for our energy needs. 
Action has been certified as a Carbon 
Negative provider following a Life Cycle 
Assessment conducted by the University 
of Wisconsin and Carbon Clear, an 
international independent auditor of 
manufacturing carbon profiles. This 
Carbon Negative certification reflects 
our sustainability-based manufacturing 
model, with verified adherence to ISO 
14000 series standards (ISO 2006). n
Centurylink Arena, Boise, Idaho, USA.
 Scope Arena, Norfolk, Virginia, USA.

 Peformance. Appearance. Endurance.

Call us at 715-476-3512
Find out more at 
fast              break
Action NitroPanel
 portables ensure quick transitions 
for players, facilities and arena managers.
Scope Arena
Norfolk, Virginia USA
2013 Action Floor Systems, LLC
2683 FastBreak_Scope 210mmx297mm.indd   1
4/17/13   3:29 PM

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More information at www.polytan.com or via e-mail: info@polytan.com
Poly_2_13_Anzeige_Ultimate_EN_A4_4C_RZ.indd   1
16.04.13   11:16

Top tracks 
playing in 
South America
Communities and colleges in Brazil, Ecuador and Chile have invested 
in top quality athletics facilities.
he Olympic and Paralympic Games 
in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and the 
Panamerican Games in Lima, Peru, are 
just two of the headline international 
competitions that South America 
will soon be hosting. Meanwhile, the 
development of athletics at college 
and club levels continues apace. Three 
recent projects, described below, 
highlight the way that top-level athletics 
tracks can boost the sport.
Run like the pros in 
Rio Grande do Sul
The upcoming 2016 Olympic Games 
are bringing Brazil into the limelight. 
But it’s not only professional athletes 
who are preparing themselves for 
the competition – amateurs, students 
and schoolchildren also want to get 
involved in the sports. And it is precisely 
for this target group that Polytan is in 
the process of delivering two projects 
in Brazil’s most southerly state, Rio 
Grande do Sul.
Having won the contract from FIERGS, 
the chamber of industry of Rio Grande 
do Sul, back in summer, Resinsa Brazil, 
the local partner of Polytan, have laid 
down a new surface in the SESI sports 
centre in the town of Caxias do Sul.  
The old natural rubber surface was  
University Diego Portales in Santiago, Chile, has opened a new 
campus and an accompanying new sports ground with  
a running track and playing field for football and hockey.

replaced with a brand new Polytan M 
surface that is particularly suited for 
performance sport and competition. 
The second Brazilian project focuses 
on college sport. Univates University 
in Lajeado thought it was high time 
its sport centre was expanded with a 
running track. Officials investigated 
the various options and possibilities 
in depth before finally choosing the 
Polytan WS surface. This all-round 
surface is suitable for both training 
and competition events, making it the 
perfect choice for college sport. The 
work will begin as soon as the surface 
arrives in Brazil, so students at Univates 
can look forward to athletics training in 
the near future. Who knows, perhaps 
one or two of them might even make it 
to the Olympic Games in Rio.
Ecuador’s athletes 
hit the field
The Chota Valley in the north of Ecuador 
is one of the poorer parts of the 
country. But the region comes top in 
one discipline: it is known for its good 
athletes! To ensure that this remains the 
case, the Ecuadorian government has 
had a modern sports centre built in the 
village of Carpuela. Having won over the 
Ministry of Sport with high standards 
of quality and excellent references, 
Polytan|STI was commissioned to 
install the surfaces for a running track, 
a football pitch and the indoor training 
facilities. During his visit to the building 
site, Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa 
also seemed to be impressed by the 
professionalism of the Polytan|STI team. 
A Polytan M surface was chosen for 
the running track at the elite centre in 
Carpuela. The football pitch was kitted 
out with a Polytan MonoTurf system. 
The installation team used the Polytan 

SE surface for the two indoor facilities. 
Practitioners of the martial arts who 
train here thus benefit from its good 
grip, as well as the requisite elasticity. 
Team sports such as volleyball and 
basketball have found a new home in the 
multipurpose hall. Accommodation units 
and a sports medicine centre have also 
been incorporated in order to create an 
absolutely ideal training environment 
for athletes in Carpuela.
It’s not just professionals who train on 
Polytan surfaces, however. The centre 
is also used by schoolchildren and 
thus serves the development of young 
talent in the country. Athletes both 
large and small take it in turn to use the 
different facilities.
college sport
The private University Diego Portales 
(UDP) in Santiago, Chile, is one of the 
best in the country and opened a new 
campus in March this year. To ensure 
that the students can really burn off 
their energy after classes, a new sports 
ground with a running track and playing 
field on which both football and hockey 
can be played was installed at the same 
time. The new facility was planned by 
the leading Chilean architect Mathias 
Klotz, who is Dean of the Faculty of 
Architecture, Art and Design at UDP. It 
was constructed by Polytan|STI’s South 
American partner, Resinsa. 
The variable moods of the Chilean 
weather demanded a particular kind 
of turf, which is why the decision 
was made in favour of LigaGrass turf 
from Polytan|STI. It has proven to be 
extremely hardwearing and particularly 
soft. Thanks to its high-quality 100% 
PE formulation, the high-performance 
football turf is substantially softer 
than other crimped synthetic turfs, so 
the students benefit from natural ball 
rolling behaviour. Furthermore, it can 
be used for hockey practices, mainly 
for the women’s team of the university. 
The running track was equipped with 
a Polytan M surface, which is ideal for 
high-performance and competitive sport.
Following the official opening in March, 
there is now nothing to stand in the way 
of college sport at the very highest 
level. The students and teaching staff 
are already looking forward to holding 
exciting competitions on the brand-new 
running track and playing field. n
The Ecuadorian government has commissioned a modern sports centre in the village of 
Carpuela. A Polytan M surface was chosen for the running track and the football pitch was 
kitted out with a Polytan MonoTurf system.

When it comes to temporary flooring, the secret to Signature Systems Group’s 
global success is mixing modern technology and old-fashioned service.
hether you’re a stadium manager 
interested in purchasing a pitch 
cover or an event organiser looking to 
hire a flooring system for a one-off 
event, it is important to work with a 
company that will help you determine 
which system is most appropriate for 
your specific needs. It is also important 
to assess what services you require and 
which trackway company is best able to 
provide them.
While most event flooring companies 
have the ability to ship their products 
globally, their services are often 
limited to a local region. With sales and 
distribution centres located throughout 
the US and UK and a global logistics 
network, Signature Systems Group 
is always ready to ship thousands 
of square metres of turf protection 
anywhere in the world. What makes 
them truly unique in the industry 
however, is the range of services they 
provide worldwide.
Signature Systems is not just the 
manufacturer of the world’s most 
advanced turf protection systems, it 
is a company of event professionals 
who are adept at working to tight 
deadlines, evolving requirements, and 
on-the-spot trouble-shooting. Signature 
provides a range of post-purchase 
services including sending experienced 
operations professionals to oversee 
installations and demonstrate proper 
installation, maintenance, storage, 
and removal methods – anywhere in 
the world. They also offer à la carte 
and complete turnkey hire services, 
including design consultation and CAD 
overlay, grounds assessment, project 
management, logistics support, labour 
and plant hire, and post-event removal.
Stade de France
When the French national stadium, 
Stade de France, hosted an extensive 
A-list concert series spanning several 
months throughout the summer and fall 
seasons of 2013, Signature Systems’ 
ArmorDeck was the obvious choice. 
Every stadium and every event has its 
own unique requirements, and Stade 
de France needed to provide a safe, 
contiguous surface for concert-goers 
that could be traversed by heavy load-
in vehicles at the corners where the 
audience area overlapped the running 
track. They needed a flooring system 
that adapted to the temperature 

fluctuations between night and day in 
the Paris summer and that fostered the 
growth and health of the natural grass 
football pitch.
ArmorDeck 1 was installed over the 
grass, where its translucent composition 
and aeration holes allowed sunlight, air 
and rainwater to penetrate the panels 
to ensure the grass stayed healthy. 
ArmorDeck Expansion Joints were placed 
strategically running both lengthwise 
and across the field to allow the floor to 
expand and contract imperceptibly with 
normal temperature changes without 
the bowing, walking, or buckling that can 
occur with other products that do not 
offer this patented solution, especially 
during the summer months.
ArmorDeck 3, heavy-duty vehicular 
grade trackway, was placed on the 
corners of the football pitch where the 
field met the running track protected by 
the stadium-owned heavy rubber track 
cover. Because the ArmorDeck 1 and 3 
share the same dimensions and locking 
system, there was no height difference 
between the pedestrian-only and mixed 
vehicular and pedestrian areas. 
edging was installed around 
the perimeter of the floor to 
provide wheelchair access and 
prevent potential trip hazards. 
All four components chosen for 
the Stade de France utilised the same 
proprietary locking mechanism, creating 
a completely contiguous surface that 
specifically addressed each of the 
stadium’s needs, exactly where required.
Fluctuations in temperature and sun 
exposure result in the expansion and 
contraction of the molecules of any 
surface. The high outer walls of open air 
stadiums expose part of their pitches to 
sunlight while part will always remain in 
shadow. This uneven heating and cooling 
of a modular pitch cover can cause 
buckling, bowing, or even walking when 
different parts of the surface heat and 
cool at different times as the sun moves 
across the sky. 
Just as vehicular bridges employ 
expansion joints to accommodate 
thermal expansion and ensure the safety 
of travellers, each of Signature’s three 
main pitch cover systems, EventDeck, 
UltraDeck, and ArmorDeck, feature 
expansion joints to ensure the safety of 
visitors and the integrity of the surface. 
Signature is the only turf protection 
company to provide fully integrated 
expansion joints at every price point. 
Each expansion system is made from the 
same proprietary plastic blends as the 
rest of the pitch cover, so the joints react 
to temperature fluctuations at the  
ArmorDeck Expansion Joints ensure the safety 
of visitors and the integrity of the surface.

same rate. This is not the case with 
metal add-on expansion joints. 
Signature’s expansion joints also 
connect to their pitch covers with 
the same connection systems as the 
flooring, making for a fully integrated 
contiguous surface. Thermal expansion 
is a frustrating fact of life, but Signature 
Systems engineers solutions that 
prevent these problems at every price 
point. With other providers, expansion 
joints may only be offered for their 
most expensive systems, if at all.
Turnkey approach
Due to the complexity of the trackway 
installations at Stade de France, 
Signature provided in-depth CAD 
drawings showing precisely where each 
ArmorDeck 1 panel would be placed 
relative to the ArmorDeck 3, where 
the expansion joints would be placed 
relative to lighting towers and peninsula 
stages, and to calculate the quantities 
of each component required for each 
performance. Because the lighting and 
staging setups for each concert were 
slightly different, Signature provided 
separate custom CAD drawings for the 
event organiser’s approval, which were 
in turn used by the installation team to 
ensure proper placement.
Signature’s turnkey approach of 
designing the layout, providing logistics, 
and handling the installation and 
breakdown for the event all proved to 
be a huge success. The logistics and 
installation were orchestrated by the 
same project managers and operations 
professionals responsible for Signature’s 
Signature Systems personnel lay the 
temporary flooring at Stade de France
work at 25 venues of the London 2012 
Olympics, including the Opening and 
Closing Ceremonies. Signature’s products 
are designed to be easily installed by 
unskilled labour, but their experienced 
team allowed concert organisers to rest 
assured from consultation and design 
through installation and removal, that 
their pitch was properly protected and 
their guests would have a safe and 
comfortable experience. n
Stade de France
ArmorDeck Protection
Expansion Joints
Transition Ramps
Hours per Installation
Stade de France’s heavy concert schedule requires 
the pitch and track to be regularly covered.

Signature Systems Group shines at Detroit’s Ford Field providing 
ArmorDeck pitch protection for Ford Motor Company’s annual 
Fall fundraiser.
The only turf protection manufacturer worldwide to offer a truly integrated 
system with all accessories fitting seamlessly into the floor layout.
Stadiums worldwide are trading in or discarding old systems for the 
product innovation, superior consultation, and exceptional service 
of Signature.
Jason Frew 
Vice President Rentals & Stadium and Arena Sales 
Direct: +1 212-953-1116 Ext. 313 
Toll Free in the US:  800-569-2751 
Fax: +1 212-953-1117 

Pioneers of  
sports surfaces
Tobias Owegeser, CEO of SMG Sportplatzmaschinenbau, discusses the installation 
and recycling of artificial sports surfaces.
What are the important industry 
developments from your perspective? 
Would you say that you are pioneers?
We’ve been in the business for more 
than 38 years and in artificial turf 
from the very beginning. We’ve 
brought in countless developments 
for the installation and maintenance 
of these sport surfaces. By the way, 
this also applies to equipment for the 
construction of all synthetic sports 
surfaces, including athletic tracks, which 
represent the main business of SMG.
You could say that our whole product 
portfolio today has developed from 
the ever-increasing demands of sports 
stadia for installation technology and 
the growing requirements of installation 
firms and venue operators.
Of course, we have not only produced 
many of these new developments as 
a result of our experience and working 
daily on-site during construction, but 
have initiated and designed them. It is 
certainly no exaggeration when we say 
that we regard ourselves as being one 
of the pioneers of the sector.
Over the decades there have been so 
many important developments in sports 
surface construction, too many to give 
justice to here. As an example I’d like 
to mention our PlanoMatic series. This 
ingenious technology has significantly 
made easier the installation of artificial 
tracks, which is why the PlanoMatic-
Series is still a world leader in use. 
and surface performance. The regular 
use of recommended equipment on 
the other hand doesn’t just keep the 
area clean, it preserves the sports-
physiological features e.g. the roll of the 
ball. Otherwise the investment is very 
rapidly put in jeopardy. 
Sporadic basic cleaning by the service 
contractor – which often is only carried 
out once or twice a year – is almost 
worthless in respect of the desired 
parameters. Especially if the artificial 
turf hasn’t had any maintenance 
in the period between. We do a lot 
to inform sports venue operators 
about the guidelines and standards 
recommended by UEFA and FIFA; we 
publish, for example, maintenance 
instructions and we organise on-site 
workshops. Installation companies 
receive intensive on-site instruction 
about the handling and the operation of 
our maintenance and cleaning machines. 
And – last but not least – our range of 
cleaning and maintenance machines is 
unparalleled worldwide.
We presented the first pre-finished 
installation installer for the so called 
‘Tartan surfaces’ back in the 1970s.
With many other machines of ours 
we’ve introduced completely new 
process technologies into the sector, for 
example the SandMatic right at the start 
of the era of long-fibre, monofilament, 
artificial turf systems. The SandMatic 
was, and still is, demonstrably the best 
solution when it comes to incorporating 
fill materials like sand or rubber evenly 
and in exact doses.
Or, as most recently, with the 
TurfMuncher TM2000D. This machine 
revolutionises the renovation of 
artificial turf surfaces. The TM2000D 
is highly efficient and flexible. And 
it is constructed so that it doesn’t 
damage the underlying construction 
(substructure) i.e. the elastic layers.
Are the club and municipal owners of 
sports surfaces knowledgeable about 
the importance of implementing a 
maintenance programme?
It’s really very simple. If you want 
your artificial turf surface to have 
maximum life and optimum surface 
quality, you’ve got to maintain it 
regularly and appropriately. In principle 
there is no surface – including artificial 
turf – that doesn’t need maintenance. 
The current FIFA study supports this 
wholeheartedly. The wrong type of 
care and maintenance can actually have 
negative effects on the operating life 
Johann and Monika Owegeser, founders of 
SMG, welcome their guests at the latest 
FSB show in Cologne.

Can you give an example of a 
challenging project you were 
involved in?
As SMG doesn’t install facilities, we 
can’t give a direct answer. We’d rather 
mention that our biggest challenge is 
day-to-day business. We’re based in 
Germany, where we’ve been developing 
and manufacturing for 38 years; we 
have warehousing of almost 4,000m
and constantly online, all hunky dory for 
the really important things, geared up 
for our customers – with 100% blood, 
sweat and tears – from advice and 
consultation to immediate availability 
of all replacement parts. This applies 
to all models of our current and not so 
current machines! Ask for a replacement 

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