In May 2018, Sydney Showground hosted Midnight Mafia, Australia’s largest Hardstyle music festival. As a sell out event, the venue was expecting high activity at the bars throughout the night, and therefore looking for a way to streamline transactions and increase security.

In previous years, the venue had also struggled with gaining complete transparency over the amount, and type of food/drink product that on-site vendors were selling.

The Token Solution

After looking at several different options, Sydney Showground opted for Token’s RFID cashless payments solution with the stated goals of improving the sales process for vendors and attendees, reducing cash liability, increasing transparency on sales data, and cutting on-site staffing costs.

With assistance from the Token team, the venue introduced the cashless payments system at the 2018 event, providing RFID wristbands to attendees upon arrival and equipping all food and drink vendors with RFID devices in order to facilitate sales at the event.

Following a decision from the promoter, all attendees were required to load funds to their bands at the event (rather than online in the days prior), so Token worked with Sydney Showground to compose a comprehensive staff management plan that ensured top-up booths were manned during peak arrival times and then reduced when no longer required. This saw over $1500 per hour saved in staffing costs compared to previous years events.

Patrons used their wristbands to make purchased at food stands and bars, all of which did not accept cash or regular credit card. This ensured faster transaction times, as well as removing the need for attendees to worry about having cash stolen from them, knowing that it was stored securely on their wristband.

Post event, the Token team worked with the venue to extract rich insights into customer behaviour from the data that was collected via the Token cashless payments system. This enabled the venue to identify information such as key purchase periods by product, common product pairings (for example, people who purchased a beer also purchased a hot dog), and the demographic of attendees who spent money on alcohol vs those who didn’t.

In Summary

At the end of the day, implementing cashless RFID payments at Sydney Showground proved successful across various key metrics:

  • A 300% reduction in average transaction time – from 60 to 20 seconds
  • Over $5000 saved on staffing costs
  • Easier financial reconciliation and less cash liabilities throughout the event