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SMG, Wichita In Arena Management Negotiations

WICHITA, KS (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Sedgwick County officials have reportedly begun contract negotiations with Philadelphia-based SMG to manage Wichita’s planned 15,000-seat downtown arena, set to open in 2009.

Talks are expected to take 60 days, with the first formal meeting set for mid-January, according to the Wichita Business Journal. The company will most likely include managing the city’s 12,000-capacity Kansas Coliseum as well.

A county evaluation team picked SMG over Global Spectrum and a team of Coliseum employees. Details of SMG’s proposal have not been made public.

Under its contract, SMG will likely collect a management fee from the county and assume some of the risk of the new arena should the facility not perform up to revenue expectations.

Commissioner Tom Winters told the Wichita Eagle that SMG can bring resources to the table that the county would have difficulty mustering.

“It feels as if we're saying our local folks don't have the capacity to do this, but I do not want to say that,” Winters said. “This allows us to bring additional resources to the table.” –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers