Aramark Getting Broncos Food Deal

Company to handle general concessions at Denver stadium

  • by Don Muret
  • Published: January 23, 2019

Aramark's new general concessions deal at Broncos Stadium at Mile High in Denver will include some nonexclusive catering at Sports Legends Mall, a tailgating area. (Getty Images)

Aramark is taking over general concessions at Broncos Stadium at Mile High, confirmed Chris Bigelow, the consultant hired by the Denver Broncos to help them select a food provider.

Local caterer Epicurean serves the stadium’s 144 suites, and premium dining is not part of Aramark’s agreement. Epicurean’s deal expires March 31, 2021, according to the request for proposal issued jointly by the NFL’s Broncos and the Metropolitan Football Stadium District, their landlord.

Bigelow deferred further comment to Jay Roberts, Broncos Stadium’s general manager. Roberts did not return an email to discuss the switch. Matt Sugar, the district’s director of stadium affairs, did not return an email for comment.

In a direct message sent through Twitter, Carl Mittleman, president of Aramark Sports & Entertainment, said, “Unfortunately, I can’t share anything at this time.”

Philadelphia-based Aramark replaces Centerplate, which had been in place since the stadium opened in 2001. The transition will take place in February, sources familiar with the agreement said.

Aramark already has a relationship with the Broncos. The vendor runs the team’s merchandise at the stadium and cleans the building through its facility services group. In addition, Aramark has a strong presence elsewhere in the Denver market. It runs concessions and premium dining at both Coors Field and Dick’s Sporting Goods Park and concessions at Pepsi Center.

Kroenke Sports & Entertainment, Pepsi Center’s owner, is going through the same process at the home of the NBA’s Denver Nuggets and the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche.

Aramark’s new agreement runs up to 10 years with two five-year options, according to the Broncos’ request for proposal, issued in August. The contract terms are a mix of commissions and a split of net profits paid to the team, although the team will consider alternative proposals, as spelled out in the RFP.

Innovation using technology, value pricing to reward season-ticket holders and faster service, “even with the severe employee shortages of the metro area,” were among the issues the Broncos want to resolve, the document said.

The concessions deal covers some nonexclusive catering at two tailgating areas: Sports Legends Mall, a green space on the stadium’s south end, and the Mile High Monument in a parking lot.

Broncos Stadium has 74,231 seats, excluding suites. The team has sold out every home game since 1970 and has a wait list of 70,000 fans for season tickets, the proposal said. The no-show rate is historically less than 8 percent.

The Broncos are Aramark’s 11th NFL food account.

For Centerplate, it’s the loss of another NFL account, following the San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans, Minnesota Vikings and Washington Redskins, all of whom switched to competitors to run food operations at their stadiums over the past five years. Centerplate remains the food provider at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome (New Orleans Saints), Lucas Oil Stadium (Indianapolis Colts) and Hard Rock Stadium (Miami Dolphins).

Centerplate is part of Sodexo, which bought its former competitor for $675 million in 2017.

  • by Don Muret
  • Published: January 23, 2019