Tom Funk to helm Legends hospitality business



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Legends appoints Tom Funk Image: Legends

The global premium experiences company Legends announced recently the appointment of the accomplished industry innovator Tom Funk as the President, Hospitality.

‘Legends’ stated that Funk will commence his new role on February 1st, 2024 overseeing the company’s hospitality businesses. Funk has over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry building and leading high-performing teams focused on innovation and growth.

Founded in 2008, New York (US)-based Legends is a premium experiences company with six divisions operating worldwide – Global Planning, Global Sales, Hospitality, Global Partnerships, Global Merchandise, and Global Technology Solutions – offering the clients and the partners a 360-degree service solution platform to elevate their brand and execute their vision.

Currently, Legends works with marquee clients across business verticals including professional sports, collegiate, attractions, entertainment, and conventions and leisure. They are the industry leaders in designing, planning and realizing exceptional experiences in sports and entertainment.

‘Legends’ further stated that Legends’ longtime President of Hospitality, Dan Smith, will move into a new role as a Senior Advisor for the business. Smith was the first employee at Legends and has stewarded the hospitality business over the past 15 years working with some of the most iconic sports, entertainment and attractions brands worldwide.

Stated Shervin Mirhashemi, head honcho, Legends, “The incredible growth and success of Legends’ hospitality business is attributed to Dan’s leadership and guidance since Day One. We are grateful for his immeasurable contributions over the past 15 years. As we continue to focus on growing the business and delivering first-class hospitality experiences for our partners, we are fortunate to have Tom take the reins and lead this next phase. Tom’s stellar reputation as an innovator and operator and his experience growing global platforms ensures he is the right leader for the future.”

Exulted Funk, “I am thrilled and humbled to be joining the incredibly talented team at Legends. I have been very fortunate in my career to work with many of the best in the hospitality and sports and entertainment industry. Dan Smith and the entire Legends organization sit firmly in that group. They have built an amazing business poised for growth. Food and beverage (F&B) and merchandise play a critical role in delivering an exceptional fan and guest experience, and we have a significant responsibility to represent our partners’ brands in the best way possible. I’m excited to continue to evolve and grow our capabilities to ensure we do this, while also providing innovative concepts and solutions that will deliver great outcomes for our partners.”

Said Smith, “For 15 years I have loved coming to work every day at Legends to stand alongside the most talented people in the business and have the pleasure of seeing them develop and deliver innovative and exciting culinary and merchandise experiences for our partners. I am excited for Tom to inherit this incredible team and our roster of world-class partners and lead them to new heights. I look forward to wearing a new hat and supporting Legends’ continued growth.”

Legends’ food and beverage (F&B) business works with the world-class clients around the globe and includes venue concessions, premium clubs and suites and catering, restaurants, private membership clubs, food hall operations, and private events catering.

The company’s fully integrated retail and merchandising vertical solution spans e-commerce, in-venue retail, large-scale live events, brick-and-mortar store operations, licensing, and customer merchandise.

Funk brings extensive experience in the hospitality industry to his new role at Legends, having operated within every venue type and held leadership roles with Levy (hospitality company), Aramark (food company) and Delaware North (hospitality company). He joins Legends from the foodservice company Compass Group, where since 2021 he has been the Executive Vice-President, Compass One Healthcare, Compass Group’s largest sector.

Previously, he spent nearly a decade at Levy, including six years serving as the Executive Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer (COO) for the global hospitality business. Before his time at Levy, he rose through the ranks at Aramark culminating in serving as the General Manager for the 41,800-capacity Citi Field in New York. Funk started his career in hospitality at Delaware North.

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