Education and Event Management

Education and Event Management

 Thomas B. Staunton CEO

Thomas B. Staunton

Does graduate output equal quality?

I’m often asked my opinion on what I think the quality of students graduating from event management courses in Australia is like. There is no doubting the number of courses and education providers in the area of events management has grown exponentially in recent years.

When Sold Out Events was started 25 years ago, it was hard to find an events management course at any level of tertiary education – they simply didn’t exist. Now there is a huge number, but given the number of graduates that institutions are pumping out, is the quality of a high standard?

There are more people coming through, but they don’t necessarily have a good understanding of what working in the events industry actually means or the broad range of tasks they might be doing, particularly while they are starting out and gaining hands-on experience.

As such, I believe the effectiveness of graduates has been compromised because of the sheer number of students that are now graduating from event management courses without a clear understanding of the industry, and we have experienced this on countless occasions with graduate students taking a sharp learning curve in the workforce.

I believe people approach the events industry in two ways. There are those who get in and get their hands dirty, and there are those who like to be in the event world. At Sold Out Events, our staff get in and get their hands dirty. They are the first on-site and the last to leave, and that’s everyone from CEO level down. Our staff will be doing everything from unpacking trucks to developing strategies and plans.

Having said that, there are many facets to events from client management to producing and delivering bespoke experiences. From executive dinners to marathons and community events. From weddings to kid’s birthday parties, ‘events’ is a very expansive industry. There is such a broad range of event categories, we know there is a place for everyone, they just need to find their passion.

For us, we deliver large-scale and high-profile events which require people who are doers, and we have been lucky to attract the right people for our business every step of the way.

Thomas B. Staunton

25 Memorable Moments - International Games and Sponsor Programs

25 Memorable Moments

International Games and Sponsor Programs

In 2018, Sold Out Events is celebrating its 25th year in business. We’re dusting off the archives and looking back at some of the 25 biggest and most memorable events we have created and managed during that time.

We kicked off our countdown by looking back some of our most memorable national tours, [link to article] and this month we are focussing on international Games and sponsor programs.

#23 – BHP Billiton 2008 Beijing Sponsorship Leveraging Program


Sold Out Events was tasked with delivering BHP Billiton’s 2008 Beijing Olympic sponsorship leveraging program which included development, planning and management of ‘mini Olympic Games’ in communities around the world where BHP operated mining sites.

From South Africa to Mozambique, children who participated in the program had the opportunity to meet their sporting heroes and ‘go-for-gold’ in a Games spectacular. As with any program this size the stats were impressive:

  • Number of Olympic events Sold Out Events produced: 28 (21 domestic, 7 international)
  • Number of Sold Out Events staff involved: 14
  • Total distance travelled by all Sold Out Events staff combined: 271,020km (equivalent to 6.76 circumnavigations of the earth!)
  • Number of children involved in the program: Over 10,000
  • Number of volunteers involved: Over 290
  • Total number of sports: 13 (soccer, hurdles, sprints, relay, shotput, javelin, volleyball, basketball, long jump, netball, tee ball, tae kwon do, judo)
  • Ambassadors: Kerrie Meares, Anna Meares, Robbie Crowther, Kyle van der Kuyp, Scott Martin, Trish Fallon, Brad MacKay, Joel Milburn, Rochelle Hawkes, Maria Mutola, Marks Maponyane, Natalie du Toit, Letitia Vriesde
  • Countries Visited: Australia, China, South Africa, Mozambique, Suriname
  • Destinations:
    o   South Africa - Metalloys, Nelspruit
    o   Mozambique – Maputo
    o   Suriname – Paramaribo, Washabo
    o   China – Beijing
    o   Australia - Groote Eylandt, Perth, Kalgoorlie, Ravensthorpe, Newman, Port Hedland, Worsley, Cannington, Dysart, Moranbah, Blackwater, Townsville, Sydney, Dendrobium, Appin, Georgetown, Adelaide, Roxby Downs, Melbourne

 #22 – 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics: Look and Feel

 The 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games was an incredible international sporting event that saw approximately 2,400 athletes from 77 countries participate in 80 events. It was the first time Australia won a Winter Olympic gold medal – who could forget Steven Bradbury’s unexpected victory in the 1000m short track speed skating?

Even more impressive were the sights and the atmosphere of the Olympic precinct, venues and arenas. Sold Out Events was responsible for developing, installing and managing the ‘look and feel’ elements of the Games. From flags and banners to colour schemes and visual effects, the team created surroundings that were truly unforgettable in competition and non-competition venues, as well as city precincts and village arenas.

However, the Games weren’t all song and dance. The evening prior to the opening ceremony, a significant snow blizzard hit Salt Lake City which effectively buried huge amounts of signage and infrastructure. Living by the motto “improvise, adapt, overcome”, the 100+ team of Sold Out project directors and crew members recovered and/or replaced all necessary signage and infrastructure, working through the night in time for opening!

Immerse yourself in the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic Games history by clicking through our image gallery.

Sold Out Events - March Newsletter

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Our Sold Out Events' March Newsletter is out now!

Yesterday marked just 30 days until the opening of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, and with so many activities and activations already taking place in the lead-up, the team at Sold Out Events is super pumped. Read our March newsletter.

Subscribe to our newsletter to stay up to date on all our news here: or see link at top & bottom of this page.

Enjoy & give us a call on +61 2 9542 7255 or contact us via with any enquiries or questions. 

25 Memorable Moments - National Tours

25 Memorable Moments

National Tours

Sold Out Events is celebrating a milestone birthday; we’re turning 25 in October. Way back in 1993, Wayne B. Staunton started out with just one client and one employee. From its humble beginnings in Sydney, Sold Out Events has grown into an award-winning events agency that is recognised on the world stage for its industry excellence.

Throughout 2018, we will be dusting off the archives and looking back at some of the 25 biggest and most memorable events we have created and managed in the past 25 years.

#25 – NAB 150 Years National Tour


In 2008, the Sold Out Events’ team staged one of the largest national tours ever seen, for the National Bank of Australia’s (NAB) 150 Years celebration. Our role included the planning and implementation of community and school events in towns and cities around Australia, as well as the research, design and production of the NAB 150 Tour Truck, a semi-trailer named Ned.

The tour made its way from Armidale to Albany and Bundaberg to Burnie. We racked up some impressive numbers during the eight-month tour which included:

  • 237 = Number of days on tour 
  • 189 = Number of events delivered
  • 32,000 = Number of kilometres travelled
  • 85 = Number of primary schools that visited
  • 83 = Number of local council applications submitted for event venues
  • 69 = Number of venue (non-government) applications submitted for events
  • 32 = Number of Lions & Rotary Clubs that barbeques hosted at community and media events
  •  101 = Number of accommodation locations stayed at by the Sold Out team
  • 1,854 = Number of kilometres of the longest distance travelled between events (Esperance to Whyalla)
  • 7 = Number of ‘big’ things visited
    • Big Guitar, Narrandera NSW
    • Big Banana, Coffs Harbour NSW
    • Big Prawn, Ballina NSW
    • Big Pineapple, Nambour QLD
    • Big Ned Kelly, Maryborough QLD
    • Big Mango, Bowen QLD
    • Big Galah, Kimba SA
  • Countless = Number of letters and phone calls of thanks from councils, venues and schools

#24 – Olympic Team Welcome Home Tours


At Sold Out Events we love working on large sporting events, after all these were the foundations the company was built on. We’ve been working with the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) for over 20 years and assisted in delivering one of the greatest sporting events Australian has hosted in recent times; the 2000 Sydney Olympic and Paralympic Games.

While the Olympics was a huge achievement to add to the portfolio, working on behalf of the AOC to deliver the Australian Olympic Team National Welcome Home Celebrations was also a highlight. The tours are epic events where medallists, along with other Olympic team members, travel to every major city in Australia in seven days so the nation can celebrate their achievements.

For the athletes who competed in Atlanta, Sydney, Beijing, London and Rio, we shut down the capital city centres, and tens of thousands of supporters gathered to meet their sporting heroes. Those celebrations included ticker tape parades and public ceremonies, and in recent times, concerts by Australian’s leading musical artists. We also coordinated live and remote television broadcasts so Australians could enjoy the colour and excitement of the post-Rio tour.

Next month, 25 Memorable Moments will take on an international flavour as we take a look at the world-class events we’ve produced around the globe.

Queen's Baton Relay National Tour

Queen’s Baton Relay National Tour

On 24 December 2017, the Queen’s Baton arrived on the shores of Australia to begin its three-month national tour. It commenced its 388-day journey at Buckingham Palace, London in March and has travelled thousands of kilometres, visiting all the Commonwealth nations and territories.

The Queen’s Baton Relay is a celebration that is steeped in tradition and brings the community together to mark the coming of the Commonwealth Games. The Baton carries a message from Queen Elizabeth to the athletes that calls on them to come together in harmony and to compete fairly.

As the Official Event Management Company of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, Sold Out Events is proud to deliver the Queen’s Baton Relay’s major celebrations around Australia. And what a line-up of events and festivals we have in store.

If you haven’t checked out the amazing line-up of Australian artists performing live around the country during the festivities, they include:

  • Dami Im – 3 February, Sydney NSW
  • Asta – 9 February, Hobart TAS
  • Kingswood – 10 February, Footscray VIC
  • Arc – 18 February, Adelaide SA
  • Potbelleez – 24 February, Perth WA
  • Jessica Mauboy – 2 March, Darwin NT
  • Lee Kernaghan – 10 March, Longreach QLD
  • All Our Exes Live in Texas – 17 March, Tully QLD
  • Josh Pyke – 31 March, Brisbane QLD

Thousands of Australians from all walks of life will carry the baton as it makes its journey to the sandy shores of the Gold Coast. Becoming a part of the Queen's Baton Relay history are six Sold Out team members. Fiona Bedford was the first and is hence the longest standing employee of Sold Out Events and joined the company when it opened its doors back in 1993. She was the first Sold Out representative to take part in the relay and carried the Baton through Armidale in New South Wales on 1 February. 


Other Sold Event staff taking part include Founder Wayne B. Staunton and son Thomas (CEO), Kim-Daniel Voss (Managing Director) and Edwina Wordsworth, as well as Christine Staunton. They will proudly bear the baton through Alice Springs, Williamstown, Emerald, Blackwater and Cleveland.

More information about the Queen’s Baton Relay, batonbearers, dates and locations, and celebration events can be found on the official GC2018 Website.

Welcome to Twenty Eighteen

Welcome to Twenty Eighteen



The new year is well and truly underway. Sold Out Events powered through January with a full schedule that kept our dedicated teams busy.

While the excitement for the opening of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018) is ramping up, our calendar is bursting with events, activations and projects around Australia and the world. Oh, and did we mention we’re also celebrating a very special birthday. We’re half a century young.

What We’ve Been Up To

Brisbane International Tennis

We laced up our ‘volleys’ for another year and supported the event’s naming rights sponsor Suncorp to manage and deliver their sponsorship rights through onsite activations, across the week-long tournament.

Australian Day Celebrations, Sydney

The Sold Out Events’ team delivered multiple Australia Day celebration events and community activities across the city including Barangaroo’s Australia Day festival, Strathfield Council’s Citizenship Ceremony and GIO’s internationally acclaimed OZ 10k Wheelchair Race.

Movies in the Park, Sydney

It was movies and popcorn under the stars over summer with Strathfield Council’s free community event that has been delivered by Sold Out Events for several years.


Big Bash League and Rugby 7s, Nation Wide

It was all systems go at the Big Bash League cricket and Rugby 7s tournament with Sold Out Events working with long-time partner AAMI to giveaway prizes to their members at games

Priscilla: Queen of the Desert Stage Show, Melbourne

We were also shaking our groove at the Priscilla: Queen of the Desert stage show promotion with AAMI in the lead up to opening night.

Fuel2Fly Netball Clinics, Melbourne

Continuing our work with Suncorp, we provided sporting inspired activities and ground support to deliver their partnership with the Fuel2Fly netball clinics.


Upcoming Events

If you thought January was busy for the Sold Out Events’ team, wait until you see what’s coming up over the next few months.

During April, we’ll be simultaneously onsite at two of Australia’s (and the world’s!) largest sporting events:

o   The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (4-15 April) where 6,600 athletes from 70 nations will be descending on south-east Queensland.

o   The Australian Surf Life Saving Championships in Perth (14-22 April) where more than 7,000 athletes will be representing 311 lifesaving clubs.

The Queen’s Baton arrived in Australia on 24 December to begin its country-wide relay, and as it travels around Australia, we will be delivering the major celebration events as the Official Event Management Company of GC2018. Keeping with the Commonwealth Games theme, we will also continue delivering major athlete and team announcements in the lead up to the opening ceremony on behalf of Commonwealth Games Australia.

From 3-12 March, Canberra will illuminate in spectacular fashion with its annual 16-day Enlighten Festival.  The Sold Out Events team will be onsite delivering signage installation and activations for the event’s major sponsors.

We will also be continuing our relationship Blue Emu Carpark by providing new and exciting activations at Sydney Swans’ home games in 2018.

It’s Our Birthday – Celebrating 25 Years

Happy Birthday to us! It’s been 25 years since Sold Out Events managed its first major event. Back in 1993, founder Wayne B. Staunton took over delivery and logistics of the Australian Surf Lifesaving Championships, and the company hasn’t looked back since. For 25 years, we’ve been building our exceptional reputation as an award-winning, internationally recognised event company.   

We will be celebrating our birthday throughout the year, but we will be kicking things off by opening up the archives and looking back the 25 most memorable events we have delivered over the past half-century. Keep an eye on our website and social pages as we walk down memory lane.

Happy Holidays!

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Happy Holidays & a Merry Christmas all!

An exciting year is coming to an end, preparations for the New Year are well underway and summer is kicking off in full force. But before we embark on new adventures, the holidays offer an opportunity to look back and reflect on the achievements of the past 12 months. It is also an opportunity to say thank you to everyone who has been part of our 2017 journey and to those who have supported us along the way. Thank you all!

In what has been one of Sold Out’s biggest years, we celebrated 24 years of amazing events, award winning event delivery and new exciting partnerships in 2017. We consider ourselves very lucky to deliver over 500+ events each year, for the significant and positive impact all of our events have on the Australian community and we love to deliver engaging and innovative experiences and inspiring and successful projects across the country and overseas. See more about 2017 here.

Our amazing journey continues and we are looking forward to celebrating more unforgettable events with you in the New Year. We also can’t wait to share the dream of the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games with you when the biggest sporting event since the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games comes to Australia in April 2018. We are very proud to be part of the GC2018 sponsorship family as the Official Event Management Company – a continuation of Sold Out’s Games legacy.

Stay tuned for more news to follow soon. Until then we wish you, your family and friends joyous holidays and a happy and exciting New Year.

Thank you very much for your support,

Best wishes,

Your Sold Out Team.