Bob Prattey, chief executive of The ACC Liverpool Group, has announced that he is stepping aside after 16 years at the helm of the organisation.
Under his leadership, the award-winning Liverpool event campus, home to ACC Liverpool, Exhibition Centre Liverpool and the M&S Bank Arena, has hosted over 3,000 events, welcomed over 8 million visitors and delivered an economic impact to the city of Liverpool of almost £2 billion.
Prattey was appointed chief executive in 2005 and launched the arena and convention centre in 2008. He continued to oversee the expansion of the business with the subsequent addition of Exhibition Centre Liverpool and Pullman hotel in 2015 as well as attracting some of the biggest events in Europe during his tenure. He will step aside at the end of March.
He said: ‘It has been a great honour and privilege to lead The ACC Liverpool Group for the past 16 years. I believe that this venue campus is amongst the premier league of European venues and has further enhanced the city’s reputation as a leading visitor destination. Since opening in 2008, we have attracted major international artists and global organisations and have reinforced Liverpool’s position as one of the most exciting cities in Europe.
“I have had time to reflect over the past 12 months and this feels like the right moment for both me personally and for the company to step aside and pass on the baton of leadership.
“While the last 12 months have undoubtedly been the hardest for all businesses in the events industry, I have been proud to lead the team through this unprecedented period. I have been amazed but not surprised by the resilience and determination shown by my team here at The ACC Liverpool Group, as well as our clients across all sectors and the entire industry, which has come together like never before.”
Max Steinberg CBE, chair of The ACC Liverpool Group, said: “I have known Bob for over 15 years and have had the privilege of working with him during my time as chief executive of Liverpool Vision, as chair of the International Business Festivals and finally in my current role as chair of The ACC Liverpool Group.
“I have always admired him for his passion, tenacity and shrewd decision-making, something which I have experienced first-hand over the last two years since joining The ACC Liverpool Group. My admiration for him has only grown as I have witnessed just how much he cares for his staff, his clients and for this city.”
Wendy Simon, acting mayor of Liverpool, added: “It is no over statement to say that Bob is the reason for so much of The ACC Liverpool Group’s success since it opened its doors to the world in 2008. He has shown a relentless drive in growing the organisation and making the experience for home-grown audiences and those visiting the city exceptional and memorable. He has made a fantastic contribution to Liverpool and on behalf of the city I would like to thank him for everything he has done and wish him all the best for the future.”
Faye Dyer will take up the role of interim managing director from April 1 2021 and will be responsible for leading the business through the covid-19 recovery phase, alongside events and operations director, Kerry Mulloy, and commercial director, Ben Williams.
Steinberg continued: “We have a senior leadership team that is ready to drive forward our recovery plans and the future of The ACC Liverpool Group. After careful consideration and planning, we have taken the decision to move to an interim leadership structure for a 12-month period to allow us to provide continuity for the business at a time when we will be focused on recovery and providing stability for our staff and our clients. I am pleased to welcome Faye to her new role as interim managing director and look forward to supporting her as she leads the business through this next phase of our journey.”
Dyer joined The ACC Liverpool Group in 2019 as corporate services director and deputy chief executive following eight years at Manchester Central, where she most recently held posts as chief financial officer and deputy chief executive.
She said: “I am looking forward to taking up my position as interim managing director in April and leading The ACC Liverpool Group through our covid-19 recovery plans as this remarkable industry gets back on its feet. We have a strong and committed senior leadership team and I am honoured to have been entrusted with Bob’s legacy and to lead the team alongside Kerry and Ben through this next phase.”