In the build-up to the Opening Ceremony of this summer’s Paris Olympic Games on 26 July, a wave of fan support from over 200 countries will descend on the French capital. 

In order to accommodate such a gargantuan task of accommodating all these fans, On Location has the unenviable task of providing not just tickets, but packages and VIP experiences that become part of the experience of watching live sports. 

Scott Jernigan, Chief Commercial Officer of On Location, brokedown how much preparation goes into hospitality for such major sporting events, how the company has innovated its services with the TKO merger of WWE and UFC, and reveals the core beliefs that go into making a successful hospitality experience.  

Firstly, can you give readers a brief insight into when preparation goes into a major sporting event, from the date it has been announced in a city, to On Location being brought in as a partner? 

Scott Jernigan: Preparation varies event to event because no two events are the same. We take pride in offering guests unique, one-of-a-kind experiences that cannot be replicated, and it starts with the relationships we have built with our partners, who trust us to deliver with excellence. 

We work closely with partners to build immersive experiences that go well beyond just a ticket to a game. As the Official Hospitality Partner of the NFL, planning and scouting begin once a city is announced as host. Looking ahead to Super Bowl LIX in New Orleans, we began scouting last year and are excited about how plans are progressing. 

We look at how we can weave the culture of the host city into our experiences. The summer Olympics take place once every four years. To deliver the biggest hospitality program in the history of the Olympic Games, the work began immediately after winning exclusive rights to Paris 2024, Milano Cortina 2026 and LA28 back in 2021. 

The common thread across all we do is the talented team we have assembled at On Location. Without their passion, dedication, creativity, and strategic minds, none of this is possible. 

As a partner of the 2024 Paris Olympics, how does On Location go about innovating the hospitality experience and improving upon what has come before in previous Olympic games, capturing the essence of a major sporting event in Paris?

Scott Jernigan: Paris 2024 marks a turning point in hospitality for major sporting events. We will deliver the largest hospitality program in the history of the Olympic Games. 

The first-of-its-kind program offers more people than ever before the opportunity to access and enjoy elevated service and experiences at the Games. Not only will guests get close to the sporting action, but they will also immerse themselves in the magic, iconic culture, and culinary offerings of Paris. 

For example, guests can watch beach volleyball at the foot of the Eiffel Tower and then head up to Gustave24, our hospitality space inside the Eiffel Tower, for next-level food and beverage. 

Or guests can witness history at the 100M Final from seats at the finish line, and head into a lounge for a bite or to meet past Olympic champions. We have taken over the Palais de Tokyo and created a hospitality space called Clubhouse24 where guests can educate themselves in the history of the Games through multiple exhibitions, put themselves in the center of the action by participating in immersive experiences, and of course, relax and enjoy true French cuisine. 

As the Olympic hospitality partner, how crucial is it to accommodate for the varying requirements for such a broad range of sports fans? How do the needs of a fan of Olympic swimming differ from that of a fan of Olympic athletics? 

Scott Jernigan: The Olympic Games is truly global, and it shines a spotlight on many sports that may not be widely top-of-mind year-round. As such, we knew it was important to provide access to as many sporting events as possible, which we have accomplished, whether it be Gymnastics, Athletics, Football, Judo, Water Polo, Basketball, or Equestrian. 

But we are not only providing tickets to these events, we are creating experiences around them, which there is great appetite for no matter where you are attending the Games from. 

In what aspects will On Location draw from its experience in crafting hospitality experiences from its work with the NFL Super Bowl and various Fashion Weeks across the globe? 

Scott Jernigan: Our experience elevating the largest, most culturally impactful events around the world cannot be underestimated. With all events, no matter the scope or size, we always begin with our guests. How can we ensure when they leave an event, they do so with memories that will last a lifetime. 

We have taken learnings from all our events and applied them to these Games, and learnings from Paris 2024 will be applied to Milano Cortina 2026 and LA28. We have an insatiable appetite to push boundaries and achieve the unthinkable, and that has helped us create a program at Paris 2024 that will set a new standard in hospitality. 

Within the Endeavor umbrella, are there any potential hospitality packages that will involve UFC and WWE events together and how seamless will this be for a fan of both companies? 

Scott Jernigan: There are certainly synergies and opportunities to tap into the avid fandom that has become synonymous with WWE and UFC. 

We have a lot of fun creating packages for these fans, from walking out to the Octagon with a UFC champion, to curated memorabilia displays, to backstage tours and ringside photos. 

This year we have strategically activated UFC and WWE on the same weekend in the same city – including UFC 298 and Monday Night Raw in Anaheim and UFC Fight Night and SmackDown in Louisville – and have had UFC athletes participate in meet & greet sessions at WWE events and vice-versa. We will continue to explore ways to bring those two worlds together. 

How fundamental is it that On Location offers a range of hospitality packages, not just for the fan, but also for the benefit of the sporting event itself? 

Scott Jernigan: Sporting events are more than what takes place on the field of play. They are a part of culture and a key source of economic growth for the host city. 

Post-pandemic, fans are seeking more curated experiences, and rights-holders are paying close attention to this trend, which aligns with our core values. We have a passionate team that sweats every detail and delivers ticket-inclusive hospitality packages that immerse fans into all aspects of an event – food, music, entertainment, fashion, and surrounding iconic landmarks. 

This is of tremendous value to the sport, the city, and the fans. And we want to ensure as many fans as possible participate, which is why at Paris 2024, for example, we have experiences starting from €85. 

Lastly, and thank you for your time, as one of the leading sports hospitality companies, can you reveal what are some of several core beliefs you believe are paramount for creating a best-in-class fan experience? 

Scott Jernigan: Fans want insider access. They want to go behind-the-scenes, they want those Instagrammable moments, they want to experience something they thought would not be possible. We provide unprecedented access to the biggest events in the world. 

Fans want a stress-free experience, from the moment of purchase to when they are back home sharing the once-in-a-lifetime memories they have made with friends. We take care of all the logistics – professional photographer on site, private transportation, VIP entrances, etc. – so you can just be in the moment. 

Fans want to share their experience with others. Whether it be family, friends, a significant other, we create experiences that can be enjoyed solo and/or as a group. 

Ultimately, creating best-in-class fan experiences is our passion and expertise. We think like fans because we are fans, and that helps us deliver unmatched experiences. 

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