Brussels Airport Consulting launched last year with the aim of improving customer experiences at venues. With expertise in the airport sector, their initial target was there, but they are also looking at public venues, hospitals and stadiums.

TLE Business caught up with Maxime Prouvost, Marketing and Sales Manager, and General Manager Bart Seuntjens, to find out more. “We aim to providing services to the airport sector, but also other industries, such as stadiums, public venues, and hospitals,” Maxime explained.

Whether that is through helping with customer flow, improving the fan experience at a stadium or increasing security measures through the installation of new technology, Brussels Airport Consulting aims to help businesses, whether they are international airports, or top-class sports teams, look to the future.

Bart explained: “We have five core competencies – airport operations, security, safety, customer experience and cargo.

“Some of them are really focused on airport because of the background of the company. But most of the capabilities we have could be translated to other industries such as safety, security, and that’s why we have recently become a partner of ESSMA.”

One of their projects has been at Royal Antwerp FC, as the ambitious club looks to ensure its Bosuilstadion home is fit for purpose should they earn a spot in one of European football’s major tournaments.

Bart said: “They had specific requests to evaluate, initially, their security level.

“They are very ambitious and would like to play on the European level, so, looking at their development over the last five years, it is clear that they have to increase their maturity in terms of safety and security.

“They asked us to do an independent evaluation of where they were to define the elements that have to be put in place, even to come to a minimum standard.

“That was what we did in the in the first phase, and then in the first half of 2020, we have developed with them their security plan.

“We also created a tool by which they are now much more efficient in staffing stewards, and they understand what costs are implied by staffing different kinds of stewards.”

Brussels Airport Consulting also looked flow management at the nearly-13,000 seater stadium. “We applied the DIM-ICE methodology, the DIM stands for Design Information and Management. So, when you when you try to evaluate the safety and security at that stadium, you just look into these three elements in terms of the infrastructure of the stadium.

“Information is really related to the communication, like signs and speakers; and management is related to all different kinds of management in the stadium.”

Bart explained that ICE is related to ingress, circulation and egress – ensuring fans flow efficiently around the stadium before, during and after the match.

And as the business attempts to stabilise following the disruption caused by COVID-19 all over the world, Bart admitted it has been a period of re-evaluating. He knows that innovation may be key going forward.

“It drives us also to be innovative, to look into maybe other ways of generating business,” he said, while adding they have had to make alterations to their original plans because of the impact of COVID-19.

Bart does, though, believe experience of overcoming difficult situations previously will stand them in good stead.

“After the terrorist attacks Brussels Airport was confronted with on the 22 March 2016, you quickly saw the restart of the airport.

“This is a different situation, but it does mean, I think, that we are credible to also support other organisations with the restart. “That is maybe one of the opportunities that are currently there.

When asked about their desire to grow the business further still, the duo are completely aligned. Maxime emphasised the ambition of Brussels Airport Consulting: “we have a vision and an ambition to be a global consulting firm.

“We are in the start-up phase, and our current focus is on Europe, including the UK.”

Interview by Gavin Harper