Speaking at the National Outdoor Events Association (NOEA) Annual Convention (Thursday 24th February), Government Olympic Executive Phil Cholewick outlined the key challenges related to the £1bn Olympics supply chain. He also emphasised the importance of maintaining all the other ‘business as usual’ activities on top of the extra 2012-related events.
London 2012 will see 15,000 athletes compete in 46 Olympic and Paralympic sports at 29 competition venues across the UK. In excess of 500,000 spectators are expected to attend the competition, with 10.8m tickets being issued.
A London and UK wide coordination calendar is being put together to help allocate and manage resources. This will be used by local authorities, emergency services and transport and health providers to ensure that resources for planned events will be available and to identify any pressure points. While there are fewer pressure points outside of London, there will still be some in other Olympic venue cities.
While Cholewick said that both supply and demand sides are raising awareness of capacity and capability, it is acknowledged that supply capacity is finite. Cholewick said: “Buyers and sellers need to engage early to address potential capacity constraints and seek out alternative solutions where appropriate.”
By December 2010, LOCOG (the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games) had awarded contracts to around 100 suppliers. More than half are SMEs and around 50 per cent are based out of London. Cholewick said more procurements are planned with opportunities for businesses of different sizes, not only through LOCOG but with other agencies including police forces, transport providers and local authorities.
Some organisations have already started their procurement processes but many are yet to begin. Cholewick advised suppliers to register on ‘CompeteFor’. CompeteFor is a free service that enables businesses to compete for contract opportunities linked to the London 2012 Games and other major public and private sector buying organisations, such as Transport for London (TfL), Crossrail and the Metropolitan Police. This will enable businesses to effectively plan capacity.
Cholewick also highlighted the need to regularly engage with local authorities and other organisations. This really could be a key issue when resources are stretched.
One of the risks highlighted to the audience at the NOEA convention was the potential rise in unregulated new suppliers emerging into the market if existing, professional companies are not prepared or ready to meet demand.
Cholewick concluded by reinforcing the fact that the London 2012 Olympic Games is the perfect opportunity to show what, as a country we’re capable of. He said: “2012 is a wonderful opportunity to showcase our events industry and UK Plc at its best.”
Category: General Event Industry News