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Partnering with the 2019 Rugby World Cup, Sodexo brings hospitality to life!

October 02, 2019

For the fifth time in a row, Sodexo, world leader in Quality of Life services, with its dedicated subsidiary Sports Travel & Hospitality (STH), is partnering with World Rugby in the organization of this year’s World Cup, taking place in Japan.

The company has tackled a major challenge: the design, development and marketing of all hospitality services (international flights, domestic transport, catering, accommodation and related activities) for sports enthusiasts from all over the world. With this new contract, Sodexo is further strengthening its commitment to creating memorable experiences for sport fans.

Sodexo, the hospitality services expert for large-scale sports events

Sodexo has renewed its partnership in the organization of the Rugby World Cup, which this year is expanding to the design and marketing of all hospitality services across the twelve stadiums where games will take place. The company has joined forces with a well-respected local partner, JTB (a renowned travel agency in Japan) to provide services that fully respect and draw from local customs.

This sporting event presented a true technical and cultural challenge, as Japan is hosting the first Rugby World Cup to take place in Asia, and sports hospitality is a fairly unknown concept in the country. Sports Travel & Hospitality is providing hospitality services at all twelve host stadiums across Japan, including a flagship temporary structure at the International Stadium Yokohama, which houses 19 private ‘Webb Ellis Suites’ for 600 people and the Webb Ellis Pavilion, a 700-seat restaurant.

The company has also developed guest experiences such as the Diamond Dinner Package, a formal sit-down dinner with live entertainment on evenings before key matches, and the Champions package where guests attend the final before attending the invitation only, black-tie World Rugby Awards the following night. All of these innovative experiences have been designed to enhance the hospitality experience and extend the spirit of the event beyond the event itself.

The Sports Travel & Hospitality offering is comprised of nine hospitality packages, from the most conventional to the most high-end, each designed to cater to the needs of as many spectators as possible, be they from Japan or abroad. 132,000 official travel packages have already been sold in more than 100 countries, including 20,000 in France and 20,000 in the UK, with another 60,000 hospitality packages being sold globally.

Nathalie Bellon Szabo, CEO Sports & Leisure Worldwide at Sodexo, explains:

“It is an honour for us at Sodexo to leverage our expertise in entertainment for large-scale sporting events, which are moments to create exciting memories. This Rugby World Cup is the very first to take place in Asia, and we have been particularly attentive in creating tailor-made services that build bridges between Western and Japanese cultures. As elsewhere, our mission is to foster togetherness and create unique and memorable experiences.”

Sodexo / Sports Travel & Hospitality and the Rugby World Cup 2019: a few key figures

  • 60,000 hospitality packages sold
  • 9 packages developed
  • 190,000 tickets sold
  • 100 nationalities reached
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