Former pro cricketer to head DVML

A former professional cricketer has been tasked with making a success of Dunedin's Forsyth Barr Stadium.

Terry Davies (53), a former deputy chief executive of the South Australian Cricket Association who at present works for the South Australian Tourism Commission, has been appointed chief executive of Dunedin Venues Management Ltd.

Mr Davies, a professional cricketer with Glamorgan County Cricket Club in Wales in the 1980s, will be the company's third chief executive. The company manages council-owned venues in Dunedin, including the stadium.

The last chief executive, Darren Burden, left in December, just a year after taking over from David Davies.

The stadium, now in its third year of operations, has failed to meet its budget each year and has had to turn to ratepayers for millions of dollars of extra funding.

It has struggled to attract headline concerts, with none, at this stage, booked for the 2014-15 year.

Since leaving the South Australian Cricket Association, Mr Davies has worked for Etihad Stadium, Melbourne, generating revenue through venue membership clubs, corporate hospitality and sponsorship.

At present, he is the event strategy manager at the South Australian Tourism Commission, reviewing its strategic plan for events, with responsibility for their commercialisation.

He was commercial manager and then deputy chief executive of the cricket association during a period when the Adelaide Oval became known as a national entertainment venue, hosting concerts by AC/DC, Pearl Jam, Fleetwood Mac and hosting the International Rugby Sevens.

A statement issued by DVML last night said Mr Davies saw it as a ''terrific challenge'' to ensure all DVML venues succeeded and wanted to ''grow the businesses significantly''.

Mr Davies was in Dunedin last weekend attending events at the stadium, it said. He is set to begin work for DVML late next month. His wife is to join him later.

Speaking from Perth last night, DVML chairman Sir John Hansen said Mr Davies was chosen from a shortlist of four. The board had sought someone with significant commercial experience.

''[Mr Davies] has got a great deal of background in all sorts of commercial activities, in attracting shows to South Australia, driving revenue and membership up enormously at the Adelaide Oval at a period when it really became successful.

''He's got a really commercial focus.''


qsrc: What about the playing fields?

qsrc: you seem to be very down on the library, but if I follow your line of reasoning the council shouldn't do anything for the city if they don't make a profit - that's a sad way to look at things. I guess you'll be going down to the council hearings next month and propose that they shut down the library, the botanic gardens and all the public playing fields.

Yes the playing fields, all of them, after all they don't make a profit either, I'm sure you think we'll be well rid of them.

I have to disagree with you though - I think the city should provide playing fields, just like it provides libraries and public gardens - all for the public good, for the health and well being of the community.

On the other hand I don't think it's the city's job to provide venues for people to sit on their back sides, drink beer and WATCH professional for profit sport - that's the ORFU/NZRFU's job, along with their partner Sky - they should pay their own way in the world, I don't owe them a living.

Where does the money go

Steve: but we don't have a "world class stadium", we have a small rugby stadium with terrible acoustics that cost far more money than it makes - it's a millstone around this city's neck, it funnels about 20 millions dollars a year of our money out of our local economy to foreign banks.

That's the thing about feel good development done by people with little economic nous it can do far more harm than good if you look at the wider effects of their actions - the stadium is closed 90% of the time, it always will be, it doesn't even make enough money to pay the people who have to be employed to keep it open.

If you want real economic development you invest in companies that will provide lots of high wage jobs, companies that will employ the best and brightest from the Uni, keeping them here, in the local economy. Rugby is a luxury, no one needs it to survive, you spend money of fripperies like rugby stadiums when you have money coming out of your ears, not when the economy is tanking. What were they thinking?


Honesty needed

It is clear to even a maths dunce that the stadium contribution cannot be $60.00 per rate payer. That said we are all in this together so how about some honesty from Council? It's hardly surprising that the community is at loggerheads over the stadium when the real facts are impossible to come by. If the true cost is actually more like $600pa per rate payer then tell us! The quicker we know the truth and find ways of dealing with this massive debt the better. I am still in favour of council selling off assets to pay down the some $650 million in debt. The worry is that even if they got the debt down to a managable level they would still find ways of putting us in the red yet again.


So Baranaby, the reason your kids are probly going to leave town is because there is a world class sports stadium in the town? That's the reason is it? Not because there are no jobs, no prospects, no growth, no potential, no money? Oh, before you say it, I already know - it's all down to the stadium right? and of course keeping up the 'anti-stadium' fight and boycotting anything that happens there is going to turn the whole thing around. You people are obsessed with figures - I am more interested in making the best of the situation and trying to encourage our kids to stay in town.........with the mind set of a lot of dunednites why on earth would they bother????

move on people

Barnaby save the dramatics.  My biggest issue with the DAPL is not that you are anti stadoum. I can totally understand why you opposed it and why you think it's too much for the rate payer to bear. However the solution to just close the doors is petty and just totally unrealistic.  Yes Barnaby we didn't go and put forward submissions like you and your buddies BUT regardless your submission didn't work and we have a great world class stadium.  Rather than starting the new CEO's reign off with a negative attitude perhaps he will be able to turn it around. Perhaps you can submit ideas (other than closing) that could help.

Move on people

Well spoken, Barnaby! 

Well spoken, Barnaby! 

The  sad thing is that there are so many who cling to the idea that they are only liable for $62,50 per year.   The other facilities being referred to weren't portrayed as being commercially viable - it was never expected that the Library would pay for itself - it was seen as a key asset an a social good. The stadium however was sold as a wondrous  cure-all that would address the needs of all sports within the city and would lure in revenues and visitors from far off lands. 

If it can pay for itself, great, I'd be happy to see that.

If it can't, then at the very least we need to:

  • stop the incessant flow of money 
  • end the masking of said losses through the DCC Corporate structure
  • ensure all events are done on a costs basis with no more subsidies unless flagged honestly in advance and in an aboveboard fashion
  • ensure it is made available for other sports (amateur orprofessional) on a more equitable basis. If profesional rugby can't meet it costs then they don't get privileged access.

Otherwise, then yes, we should hand it to the Uni.  


We also need to ensure that none of those who rammed this down our throats  can do it again - the lessons need to be learned and we need proper processes to prevent such enthusiastic railroading. 


Another for the white elephant to trample underfoot. I'll give him 12 months before he too bails.

However, given he worked for SATC and the council is reviewing DVML maybe he will take over Tourism Dunedin and that will come under a revamped DVML banner.

Either way I still have to pay more on my rates directly and indirectly) for the stadium. I am so glad I dumped my investment properties when they decided to build the damn stadium.


Professional sport

Qsrc, none of the facilities you have described from your rates statement were built specifically to provide a venue for a professional organisation who chose to vacate their own premises because of rampant debt and then continued to use the new facility at a subsidised rate without paying the actual cost required to operate.

Your example is a weak one have another go.


When to close it

qsrc: you could equally ask "when was the last time the schools made a profit?" The thing is like the schools we all profit from having libraries - we don't build them to make money we build them to make our society work, as an investment in our future - without intelligent kids being schooled and well read there will be no one around to keep the economy ticking over when you and I are retired, and if there are then we've all profited from the schools and the library.

On the other hand if you build an entertainment pavilion for a professional, for profit, sports team then yes of course you should expect your cut of the profit. And if you build a stadium with the condition that that sport will kick in 1/5 of the cost, and they don't, and you are promised by the people who want to build it that it will make a profit and it doesn't, then yes you take them by their word and tell them that you expect that promised profit. If it turns out they went and rentedthe place out to their mates at below actual cost then perhaps you might even be a bit annoyed.

Personally I don't expect the rugby stadium to ever make a profit - the debt servicing alone is an insane burden - I do however expect it to  break even on its operations, as Mr Farry and the CST promised - and that means that rugby has to pay enough for their tickets to cover the costs of keeping it open, if they won't we should simply close it.

ODT coverage, DCC woes

For some time now, prostadia, the newspaper has featured articles on the trials and tribulations of the stadium and Dunedin Venues Management Ltd (DVML), and the city council's attempts to render assistance to operationals using public monies - until the point has been reached for a Stadium Review, announced by council chief executive Sue Bidrose at the Draft Annual Plan 2014/15 meeting on 23 February this year.

The review of the operating model had started and was being undertaken by the council in conjunction with the boards of council holding company Dunedin City Holdings Ltd (DCHL) and DVML, taking external advice where necessary. Link 

When DCC says it must take stock - to undertake a full review of governance, operating model, debt servicing, rates and performance - and for the newspaper to repeat this, prostadia should be pleased the use of public money (unsuccessfully for the most part, resulting in dire losses for the council) on the stadium since it opened for RWC 2011 is now under official scrutiny; aided as it is by the appointment of the council's new chief financial officer Grant McKenzie.

''There are assumptions made in that original model that will never be achieved and if we continue to live believing they can ever be achieved we will just be dealing with losses." --Mayor Dave Cull Link

Don't believe the proDunedinCitynaysayers, believe your city council.

And, prostadia, take a look at the books of Dunedin Venues Ltd (DVL) if you dare.

A little boy waits......

Still no answer, when did the library last turn a profit? When did the early settlers last turn a profit? how about the art gallery?

Oh that's right they don't host rugby so no point having a whinge! 

My rates are abour $2100 per year, quiet frankly for what the DCC provides me for that $2100 per year I'm happy. $2100 is peanuts, a drop in the ocean. $63 spent on the stadium is money well spent as far as I am concerned. 

DAPL unite! We must run every forward thing, progressive, positive thinking citizen from Dunedn and return to 1954.
We will fight them on the stadiums, we will fight them on the hotels, we will fight them on the University, we will fight them on anything that may provide growth or stimulation!

Town hall upgrade

"Where was the opposition to all the other mutimillion dollar projects such as the town hall upgrade?"  People oppose what they personally want to oppose, Max Power, and seeing it is their own money and time and effort they are using they have the right to choose their own priorities. Other people whinge about opposition, whinging is the biggest effort they can be bothered to make. They do not seem to think if they support an expensive or controversial project they could get off their rear ends to publicly declare their support, they wait until it is all over and then come out of the woodwork bleating.  

By the way there was a very active group who opposed one aspect of the Town Hall upgrade, that was the ditzy not to mention expensive and visually naff glasshouse extension into Harrop Street.  As a result of their efforts this nonsense was eventually filed in the round file, not however after untold (literally, ask the council how much time and resources were used in planning, good luck getting a straight answer) engineering and architect and uncle-tom-cobley time was expended in that particular brain-pffft.  

Don't complain too much, Max Power.   People "obsessed" by dumb schemes and the waste of ratepayers' money who opposed various schemes have saved you plenty.  Sorry, there's nothing I can do about the way memory fades selectively over time.

Never let the facts get in the way of your fiction

Haj, Max_Power and Qsrc!

You have all clearly followed the stadium debate at a very superficial level and, I suspect, have never attended any of the submission meetings where submitter after submitter, including myself,  raised concerns about the total outflow of Ratepayer money on the various ridiculous projects that the Council has spent our money on. The Stadium comes in for the most criticism because of the total lunacy of spending so much money on a duplicate stadium and because it was misrepresented so appallingly. Haj, if you fondly believe the stadium is costing ratepayers $60 a year then I can only imagine that you haven't been paying attention during the debate on the issue. As has been pointed out time  and time again, the real cost is more like $600 per ratepayer per year. Sit down with a piece of paper and a calculator and do some simple maths. In fact the $60 figure that is quoted only covers $5,000,000 of debt and, believe it or not, the stadium cost us, and continues to cost us every year, quite a wee bit more than that. If you really believe that the library is costing us more than the Stadium, Hsrc, then I don't know whether to laugh or cry. 

Yes, there are terrible things going on in the world and Dunedin is only a small unimportant town in a global context but what has happened here is beyond belief and has denied it the chance to grow and prosper. My kids are 4th generation here but I can't see any of them wanting to stick around in a city that has dug such a huge black hole for itself. The fact that so many people cannot understand the financial implications for the town is extremely worrying. It is impossible to blithly "get on board" as Haj requests because doing so will bring the city to its knees. The only way out that I can see is to transfer ownership to the University (because there is no way they will buy it) or close the thing down.  

It is nothing short of astonishing

It is nothing short of astonishing that anybody still believes the stadium figure on their rates account. The Museum, Settlers' Museum, Library  etc figures you quote are probably accurate. You've been duped. The original $66 pa figure quoted accounted for a $5 M pa shortfall from DCHL. This paid the interest on $5 M, but fails to account for the balance of the $266 M [DCC's own latest figure]!!!! In reality, the average houshold in Dunedin is paying way over $600 per annum for this foolish folly.


I asked a question

And got a typical misdirection answer. When was the last time the library turned a profit? When was the last time it was even full?

Don't try to tell me what my rates pay for I have them in front of me I've a far better idea that you.  

Agree with below, get out more DAPL. 

Well said HAJ

And while these same people have been obsessed by the stadium they have been blind to the other 450 million in debt that the council has racked up. Where was the opposition to all the other mutimillion dollar projects such as the town hall upgrade? I don't reall seeing a group call Stop The Settlers. There was none, and why? Because the anti stadium people have no interest in anything that doesn't benefit them and will selfishly fight against public assets they don't use because they can't see the benefit for the greater community. 


I am not a local - in fact, not a NZer - but have lived in Dunedin for many years. I have kept up with the stadium 'saga' since the first mutterings of a new stadium with interest. What is almost more interesting is the total obsession the 'non-stadium' people appear to thrive on.

You people clearly need to get out more  What do you want now? Knock the thing down?Yyou just can't bring yourselves to get on board. It's beyond ridiculous!

Have you people actually watched the international news? With interest? People dying in wars, natural it really that important that $60 of your money goes on the stadium? Really?

if it is you are very sad people. The stadium is the best thing to happen to Dunedin for a long time. Apart from me!


Qsrc: you misrepresent where the cost of the stadium is going - sure the DCC may be directly charging you $60-odd in rates for the stadium, but the vast bulk of the stadium costs, the debt and debt servicing costs in particular are payed by DVL, not the DCC.

The money for DVL comes from the profits of the other companies in the DCHL corporate umbrella and those profits go to DVL rather than being passed to rate payers as rates rebates as they were before the rugby stadium was built.

To pretend that all you are paying is $63 for the stadium is unrealistic - there are 50,000 ratepayers in Dunedin and if we were all paying $63 a year the total would only be $3m of the $20m that the city has to pay every year for the rugby stadium, its on going losses, and the cost of paying and servicing its debt. You're either misrepresenting what the stadium costs the rest of us, or, like so many self-entitled rugby fans, just not paying your share.

Stadium saviour?

Is this man to be the saviour of the stadium? What's his specialty going to be? Ressurecting the dead perhaps? Walking on water? Or is it flogging a dead horse? I'm picking the latter, and when he finds out the dead horse can't be revived he will be off like the other two. [Abridged]

Good thinking

Max, I just had a look at my rates bill:

Stadium $63.32 

So im looking for someone to take the following off my hands:

Early Settlers $42.65
Library $70.18
Botanical gardens $ 51.39
Town hall $34.43

Will trade for the equivelant amount of Stadium rates. Especially the Library - when did that place last turn a profit? 


what is your point?

EJ Kerr yes I know that, what is your point?? 

Kris, I'll pay your stadium rate...

...if you pay my rates for the things I don't use, galleries, museums, pools etc... Works out to be multiple times the cost of the stadium!

I'll pay your stadium rate...

Kris, I'll pay your stadium rate......if you pay my rates for the things I don't use, galleries, museums, pools etc. Works out to be multiple times the cost of the stadium!

New CEO for stadium

I wish him luck as well as it is a really tough gig. I hope he has been given the freedom to tell rate payers how it really is. We are all in this mess together so let's see the true picture and see how we all find a way through it. He will only get support if he is not forced by his employer to feed us yet more spin in relation to the dire financial situation the stadium is in. Let's all remember the situation is not his fault, he can only do the best he can so good luck.

Yawn Yarn

driver, do you mean 'boring'? YAWN is the actual acronym for Young Adults With Narcolepsy.

Stadium Suggestion Box, Series1, Episode 4

Congratulations new chap on this exciting appointment and turning point in your career. Here is a way to make a great start in your new job.

1. Find out what Darren Burdon did during his time there.

2. Do the exact opposite.

Good luck.

A move by DVML

stevepf, the new chief executive is employed by Dunedin Venues Management Ltd.


It is very obvious the DCC the DVML the DVL and all the other DDDDDDD's have no clue.

Another good ole boy sports guy just like Dave Davies!

Another reason not to pay our stadium charges when next rate bill comes. 


Yawn. I dont think he stands a chance. But.... I really want to be proven wrong as I actually want the pro-stadium supporters to all be pointing thier fingers at me to say 'there! We told you so!'
I am throwing out the challenge to the new bloke to prove to this negative and outspoken rude commenter that he can make this thing work and take on the biggest "Ill show him" attitude weve ever seen.

Great news

fantastic news. Great to see someone with a Tourism background rather than just stadium background. hopefully this will see the stadium and Dunedin Centre used for multi-purpose and hopefully see the value in the bread in butter business that keeps these venues afloat such as conferences and events. A positive move by DVL. I just hope the DAPL give him a chance before they criticise, or I hope that he chooses not to listen to the smaller minority that don't appreciate these venues. 

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