Venue management giant ASM Global has partnered with Evolv Technology to roll out a security screening system that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to scan guests in real-time.

ASM Global-operated AO Arena (cap. 21,000) in Manchester is the first arena in Europe to use Evolv’s technology as part of ASM Global’s £50m investment into the venue. The technology will aim to enhance venue safety and security, as well as reduce queues.

The venue has been using AI-based threat detection screening system Evolv Express to screen guests as they arrive at the arena for events, without them having to stop or remove items from pockets or policy-compliant bags. So far the system has been used for eight shows and welcomed over 54,000 guests with a full roll-out planned for September.

Through the technology, security professionals will be able to use historical and real-time screening data to gain insights and make predictions about throughput. ASM Global has been working with Evolv for more than two years to ensure the technology has been tested to government standards in both the UK and US.

ASM Global director of safety security and risk Gary Simpson said, “The detection technology has been used for some time in America but this is the first such deployment at an Arena in Europe. Given the positive experience at the AO Arena, Manchester we are planning a further roll out to other venues in Europe as part of our VenueShield programme.”

Evolv Technology CEO Peter George said, “With this partnership, AO Arena joins other iconic venues secured by Evolv, including Lincoln Center and Gillette Stadium in the US. As we continue to expand globally, we look forward to working with ASM to help bring safer venues and better experiences to more people.”

Evolv operates as part of ASM Global’s VenueShield, the company’s safety and security programme. Evolv marks the first addition to VenueShield since the pandemic.