Details Of Disagreements Between ICC And Global Spectrum Surface

HIDALGO, TX (CelebrityAccess Staff Writers) — Despite the fact that Global Spectrum has departed from it’s partnership with ICC at the Dodge Arena in Hidalgo, Texas, the rocky relationship between the two companies is just now coming to light.

The Hidalgo Monitor obtained several months’ correspondence between the two companies and the city, uncovering a list of complaints ranging from the quality of concessions to the way Dodge Arena’s books were done that led to the ouster of Global Spectrum LP as the manager of the city-owned venue’s day-to-day operations.

The Philadelphia-based Global Spectrum LP had a contract with International Coliseums Co. to run the 5,500-seat arena. Last month, the two companies parted ways, and ICC replaced Global Spectrum with GECompass LLC, a joint venture between Global Entertainment Corp. and Global Compass Facility Management.

The correspondence obtained by the Monitor revealed that the city’s dissatisfaction with Global Spectrum’s customer service and accounting practices began almost as soon as the arena opened.

“The commitment to customer service has been a key issue of concern since the inaugural event was held in the facility on October 23, 2003,” Rick Kozuback, president and CEO of ICC’s Global Entertainment, wrote in a December 10, 2003 letter to Global Spectrum.

Kozuback also referred to the city’s belief that its requests had not been dealt with “in an expedient and respectful manner,” “growing concern” on the part of the city over a “general lack of professionalism” displayed by the Global Spectrum staff, “apparent lack of pride in the building” and lack of “commitment to improving the level of cleanliness within the venue.”

He also cited “grave concern” on the part of the city over the “quality, service and pricing of food and beverages offered by the Global Spectrum managed, Hidalgo Festivals, Inc.” and says that “comments from premium seat holders, club seat and luxury suite owners; indicate a growing dissatisfaction with this crucial part of their experience at the Dodge Arena.”

He also questioned the company’s accounting practices, citing five incidents in the month preceding the letter where deposit slips did not reconcile with the funds deposited, 19 non-sufficient-fund checks that had been issued, and a period where the account had been overdrawn by $62,000 for two days. An audit by an outside firm is currently underway, according the paper.

Kozuback’s letter also lists concerns about a “lack of security after performances” which has led to “various problems with theft.”

In a response letter by Global Spectrum, the company argued that the problems were not of its making, had been remedied in a timely manner or were not its responsibility to address under the terms of its contract with ICC.

Earlier this month, a settlement agreement was signed resolving a lawsuit Global Spectrum filed against ICC and the city’s facilities corporation in response to ICC’s efforts to terminate its contract. The lawsuit alleged breach of contract, business disparagement and fraudulent transfer.

Brian Rothenberg, assistant general counsel for Global Spectrum parent company Comcast Spectacor LP, says in the correspondence that many of the challenges Global Spectrum were faced with were the result of “inappropriate demands” upon it. He maintains that the company nevertheless had met the challenges, and achieved “greater than expected financial results” and “received high marks from many patrons and promoters.” –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers