Team San Jose Allowed to Continue Operating City's Convention Center and Venues

Team San Jose, the nonprofit corporation in charge of managing the Northern California city’s McEnery Convention Center, various civic facilities, and the San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau, received a reprieve by the city and will continue to operate those venues, following a year of improved results.  

According to figures released by Team San Jose, the entity exceeded seven of nine performance indicators for fiscal year 2010-11 established by the city. Two key criteria were a total revenue of $18.7 million, which was $4.8 million over budget, and transient occupancy tax revenue that exceeded budget by 8.7 percent. 

San Jose’s city council thus has backed off its search for a management agency for the convention center and various city performing arts venues, a move that would have threatened Team San Jose’s existence. The organization experienced setbacks in 2010, after an audit revealed it ran over budget and was in trouble fiscally. 

After a reorganization of its board of directors and an overhaul of its internal oversight processes, this past March, Team San Jose got a new CEO. Bill Sherry, the aviation director of the Mineta San Jose International Airport, was brought over after overseeing a successful $1.4 billion airport modernization project. 

The city also acquired a new chief operating officer and a new chief financial officer for Team San Jose. It also hired an outside advisory agency to gauge Team San Jose’s convention and hospitality marketing efforts against those of rival destinations. 

Said Mayor Chuck Reed, of the city’s approval to let Team San Jose continue operating the buildings: “This extension will allow Team San Jose to build on its recent progress.” 

The “vote of confidence is a positive move forward,” noted Sherry. “This is a great signal to our customers and the community. With a new state-of-the-art convention facility coming online in 2013, San Jose has a lot to offer convention planners.”

This past April, the city greenlighted a $120 million expansion and renovation project for the McEnery Convention Center that’s due two autumns from now. It will add 125,000 square feet of new, flexible space, including a 35,000-square-foot ballroom. The convention center will remain open throughout the project.