Cashing in on Cashless in a Stadia Environment
The theme of this article is Football Clubs however this also benefits of cashless environment affect other sporting venues including but not limited to racecourse, rugby club, motor racing enterprise, basketball club, athletics club etc. In fact the German F1 Grand Prix in Nurnberg just last year, the 2010 Football World Cup in South Photography equipment, the 2012 Olympics in London, 2014 basketball google stadia World Cup in The country have plans for cashless facilities and in the case of the German F1Grand Prix formerly implemented a cashless solution. To demonstrate this point Sandra Alzetta, Visa Europe Senior VP for consumer market development, said “the aim is for a cashless Olympic Games in London in 2012”.
In recent years we have seen a spike in e-payments or what is now been classified as cashless payments, but what is the explanation for this gallop towards removing cash from some environments. Well that is simple….. costs savings, revenue generation and efficiencies.
There have been various types of establishments implement cashless something or other including Local Authorities, Government, Schools & Universities, Sports Domains and more. All have awakened to the fact significant benefits including modest revenue generation but moreover cost discounts and efficiency gains. In fact one local authority have witnessed 60% increase over all efficiencies by giving and entitlement card rather than paper vouchers and cheques.
The potential for generating revenue in most sectors is, as previously mentioned, modest however not so within the stadia environment where the increase in revenue for a well planned and implemented scheme can be significant. And once that is added to the benefits of holding the placed funds and having immediate access to the transactional data the attraction for football clubs is very clear. But is this just hype or are the financial benefits of cashless stadia truly a reality? They can be if the scheme is a closed scheme where the cashless solution operates only within the arena and club shop, and where club is the custodian of the cashless scheme and the funds placed within it. This type of scheme could be managed by the club directly or the club could employ a specialist organisation to manage the scheme on their behalf whilst retaining the overall control.
This method vastly improves a business case based on income and also provides the club a primary relationship with the advocate and autonomy over the day to day operation of the cashless scheme including the all important scheme rules, in particular the break rules. How the cashless scheme is perceived by the proponents will be the critical success factor in terms of customer experience for every Cashless Stadia scheme. So in the closed scheme managed by the club, the fans are truly supporting the club on many fronts not just from the terraces and with the right scheme rules the club is directly responsible for the partnership with the proponents.
If, however, the club outsource the whole cashless process to an authorized then the vast majority of the financial benefits disappear along with the direct relationship with the advocate, but this does fit with a business case built around streamlining operations to just core functions. Control over the scheme operation and rules have also been passed to the alternative party supplier.
Also depending on the contract terms data sharing may also be less than ideal. Transactional data is really important for providing the club with the ability to dynamically create customized promotions and will be offering to the proponents via CRM. If data is not available on demand then selling those surplus XXXL away shirt in April is often more of a blunderbuss rather than sniper approach.
On the face of computer giving away all this control to an authorized is not the best approach, correct? Well that depends on what the club already have some requirements. If the clubs view is that they are in the business of playing football and success on the pitch, and the in business cost of a cashless solution in their stadia is a necessary evil, then freelancing the entire scheme is precisely the right thing to do. However if the aim is to be able to efficiently manage and nurture the partnership with the advocate whilst generating additional income from intelligent but uncomplicated use of the transactional data, then freelancing the whole cashless scheme would be madness.
Your choice to go cashless either completely or in just one section of a stadia is not an easy one to make and must be done after properly studying the clubs overall objectives and other considerations such as the contractual arrangements with other suppliers such as caterers etc. Then and only then can and informed decision come in for a best fit solution and how it ought to be implemented to ensure the highest rate of customer delight and take up is achieved.