Sodexo Prestige, the UK’s largest event caterer and provider of corporate hospitality packages, has secured a six-year multi-million pound contract to provide full catering services at The Open Golf Championship.
The contract awarded to Sodexo Prestige is the first of its kind, as all previous catering contracts awarded by The Royal and Ancient (The R&A), the governing body for golf worldwide, have been divided amongst various providers.
From 2008 onwards, when the Open Championship is due to take place at The Royal Birkdale Golf Club in Southport, Sodexo Prestige will not only be catering for all of the 16,000 hospitality guests and patrons and 250,000 members of the public who attend the championship each year, but also The R&A, their international guests, the players and their families and the media.
In appointing Sodexo Prestige as exclusive caterers to the UK’s major golfing championship, The R&A strengthens its successful 33 year relationship with Sodexo, and confirms the company’s outstanding reputation as a catering provider at world class sporting events such as the Rugby World Cup, Royal Ascot and the Grand National.
Visitors to The Open can look forward to sampling a wide range of dishes, freshly prepared on-site, from a choice of menus specially tailored to reflect the region where each championship is being held. Sodexo Prestige will also be working in close conjunction with The R&A to address sustainability issues; using locally sourced ingredients wherever possible, selecting seasonably available produce and reviewing how food can be transported to sites more efficiently in order to reduce food delivery miles.
Simon Bailey, managing director for Sodexo Prestige racing, stadia and events said, “This new contract is testament to the consistently higher standards of catering Sodexo Prestige has delivered over a number of years at The Open Golf Championship. We are delighted to be working in partnership with The R&A to implement all the initiatives they need to realise their long-term plans.”
David Hill, The R&A director of championships said, “Only a company of Sodexo’s size and experience could deal with the complex catering demands of this highly prestigious annual event. The outstanding levels of quality and service that Sodexo has brought to The Open Golf Championship in previous years persuaded The R&A that it could meet the needs of this new contract with commitment and expertise.”
In the UK and Ireland, Sodexo employs 48,000 employees, and provides food and facilities management services to clients at over 2,300 locations in the business and industry, education, healthcare, leisure and defence sectors. Sodexo is part of the Sodexo Group which has more than 332,000 employees at 28,300 sites in 80 countries.