Resorts World Arena

The Resorts World Arena is a multipurpose indoor arena located at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Solihull, England. It has a capacity of 15,685[1] seats. The venue was built as the seventh hall of the NEC complex. After 18 months of construction, the arena opened as the "Birmingham International Arena" in December 1980 with a concert by Queen.[2]

Resorts World Arena
Exterior of venue under old signage (c.2016)
Former namesHall 7 (planning/construction)
Birmingham International Arena (1980–83)
NEC Arena (1983–2008)
LG Arena (2008–14)
Genting Arena (2014–18)
AddressPerimeter Rd
Birmingham B40 1NT
LocationMarston Green
Coordinates52°27′12″N 1°43′10″W
OwnerNational Exhibition Centre
OperatorNEC Group
Broke ground11 April 1979 (1979-04-11)
Opened5 December 1980 (1980-12-05) (as Birmingham International Arena)
Construction cost£28 million (renovation)
ArchitectEdward Mills & Partners
Structural engineerOve Arup & Partners
Venue Website

In 2019, Resorts World Arena had the 5th highest ticket sales of an arena venue in the United Kingdom.[3] The Ticket Factory is the official box office for the Resorts World Arena.[4]


LG Arena logo used from 2009 to 2014.

The venue was known as Birmingham International Arena until 1 September 1983,[5] then as NEC Arena from 5 September 1983 to 31 August 2008.

From 1 September 2008, the NEC Arena was officially renamed as the LG Arena, following a naming-rights sponsorship deal with global electronics company LG. The arena then underwent a £29 million overhaul of its facilities, paid for by loans from Birmingham City Council and regional development agency Advantage West Midlands.[6]

Work on the LG Arena was finished mid October 2009 and the arena hosted its first concert with Tom Jones. Included in the installation were around 1,000 new seats, bringing the capacity to 16,000[7] to compete with venues such as The O2 Arena in London and the Manchester Arena in Manchester, which are amongst the busiest music venues in the world. Also constructed were new hospitality areas and a forum containing new bars, restaurants and other customer facilities. Prior to its first concert, the arena hosted the 2009 Horse of the Year show.

In 2011 the venue became the tenth-busiest arena in the world[8] and 13th-busiest in 2014.[9]

It was announced in November 2014 that as part of a sponsorship deal with the casino group, the arena would be renamed the Genting Arena from 6 January 2015.[10][11] On 25 September 2018, the NEC Group announced that the Genting Arena will be renamed "Resorts World Arena" as of 3 December of this year. Genting UK will continue to sponsor the hall. The reason for the new name is to more closely align the venue with Genting's Resorts World Birmingham that is opposite the arena, which opened in October 2015.[12]

Planned expansion

On 9 March 2020, the NEC Group announced they have submitted a planning application to Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council to expand the arena's capacity from 15,685 to 21,600, if approved, this would make the arena the largest indoor arena in the United Kingdom. This development would involve the demolition of the existing roof, with an addition of an upper tier as well as other works including enhanced hospitality facilities as well as external, internal and major refurbishment works.[13]


The Spice Girls performed 6 sold-out shows on the Spiceworld Tour during April and May 1998. Comedians such as Michael McIntyre, Ricky Gervais and Peter Kay have brought their shows to the venue.

In 2010 and 2011, the arena hosted the Birmingham audition stages of the British reality television music competition, The X Factor.

On 19 December 2010, it played host to the 2010 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Award, and it also hosted the 2016 and 2018 BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards. On 5 November 2011, it played host to UFC 138.

Adele performed at the arena during her world tour on 29, 30 March and 1, 2 April 2016.

Black Sabbath performed their last show of their farewell tour The End Tour on 4 February 2017.

South Korean rapper, G-Dragon also played at the arena on 23 September 2017 as part of his ACT III MOTTE tour.

Lady Gaga concluded her Joanne World Tour at the arena on 1 February 2018.

Iron Maiden performed at the arena on 7 August 2018, as part of their Legacy of the Beast World Tour.

Following the highly successful Britney: Piece of Me, Britney Spears adapted the residency into an international concert tour and performed at the arena on 31 August 2018, credited as the Piece of Me Tour.

The Vamps have played the arena multiple times on 8 and 9 May 2015, 25 and 26 March 2016, 19 May 2017 and 4 May 2018 amongst multi artist events such as Hello World and Free Radio Live.

In December 2019, the arena hosted the Arena Auditions and Live Final stages of The X Factor: The Band.

Little Mix performed at the venue on 7, 8 and 9 November 2019 during LM5 The Tour.

Ticket sales

Year Name Ticket Sales Gross Sales (USD) Worldwide Rank UK Rank
2019 Resorts World Arena 471,654[3] 31,291,486 43 5
2018 Genting Arena 352,902[14] 51 6
2017 565,322[15] 26 6
2016 394,468[16] 35 6
2015 446,415[17] 27 6

NEC Group

Parent company The NEC Group also owns and operates the Arena Birmingham (previously the National Indoor Arena and Barclaycard Arena) and ICC Birmingham, both in central Birmingham, and the National Exhibition Centre.[citation needed]


  1. "Our Brands | Genting Arena, Birmingham". Retrieved 21 May 2019.
  2. "NEC: From Eurovision to the G8". 5 March 2014. Retrieved 17 June 2019.
  3. "2019 Worldwide Ticket Sales Top 200 Arena Venues" (PDF). Pollstar. 16 December 2019. Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  4. "Sponsors". Genting Arena Birmingham.
  5. Haryott, R.B.; Budd, P.J.; Feltham, Ian (February 1983). "THE NATIONAL EXHIBITION CENTRE HALL 7, BIRMINGHAM INTERNATIONAL ARENA". 74 (1). Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers: 25–46. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  6. "Birmingham NEC Arena to be renamed LG Arena in £28m revamp". Trinity Mirror. 4 July 2008. Retrieved 10 February 2017.
  7. "Venue Information". Genting Arena Birmingham.
  8. "Manchester Arena Is Second Busiest Arena in the World". Manchester Confidential. Archived from the original on 7 June 2012.
  9. "Manchester Arena is third busiest in the world" (PDF). 13 January 2015.
  10. "Birmingham's LG to become Genting Arena". BBC News. 5 November 2014. Retrieved 10 February 2017.
  11. Brown, Graeme (6 November 2014). "Birmingham LG Arena renamed Genting Arena in new sponsorship deal". Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 10 February 2017.
  12. "Genting Arena to become Resorts World Arena". IQ Magazine. 25 September 2018. Retrieved 2 October 2018.
  13. "Plans to expand major arena submitted". Insider Media Ltd. 5 March 2020. Retrieved 9 March 2020.
  14. "2018 YEAR END Worldwide Ticket Sales TOP 200 ARENA VENUES" (PDF). Pollstar. Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  15. "2017 YEAR END Worldwide Ticket Sales TOP 200 ARENA VENUES" (PDF). Pollstar. Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  16. "2016 YEAR END Worldwide Ticket Sales TOP 200 ARENA VENUES" (PDF). Pollstar. Retrieved 2 January 2020.
  17. "2015 YEAR END Worldwide Ticket Sales TOP 200 ARENA VENUES" (PDF). Pollstar. Retrieved 2 January 2020.