Breaking News
More () »

Corpus Christi business owners concerned about alcohol sales at American Bank Center

Manager OVG 360 currently only allows in-house alcohol sales, excluding local vendors


A Corpus Christi City Council meeting Tuesday saw local business owners voice concern about OVG 360's business model for managing the American Bank Center.

“I’m asking as a citizen and a business owner, please dive deeper into the situation," said Casey Lain, owner of House of Rock. "Look at the history of this building, what it was designed to do and make a decision that’s best for our community.” 

Lain said OVG 360 is not giving his business a fair chance to sell alcohol at events he sponsors there. City Manager Peter Zanoni offered a rebuttal, saying they hired OVG 360 to manage the center with a new approach to catering services.

“Across their entire customer base, OVG is the only provider of food and beverage,” Zanoni said Tuesday. “OVG’s business model is to include small business and local business in a different type of way, so they’ve already engaged many.”

Lain, who spoke to 3NEWS on Thursday, said the work OVG is doing to include local businesses in new ways doesn’t make up for the way they did things in the past.

“That doesn’t replace the amount of business that we we're doing as liquor caterers," Lain said. "It’s kind of a little different business model, which often works, but I still believe that in addition to that little bit of business they should still be giving us the business that we’ve had for a decade.”

Malcom DeShields, owner of The Bar-B-Q Man and another business owner affected by the changes, said Zanoni's comments on Tuesday were different than what he expected.

“He told them that they had had group meetings," DeShields said. "Which in a sense, I was thinking a group meeting is all of us together. Well no, he had a group meeting with four people individually.”

3NEWS spoke with OVG 360’s general manager of the American Bank Center Brian Martin to address Lain and DeShield’s concerns. Martin said their business model might be different, but plans to highlight local businesses in other ways to improve the customer experience while adhering to alcohol licensing requirements.

“We want to work with local companies, we want to bring them in and have them to be pieces of what we’re trying to do here," Martin said.

Martin also said that while alcohol sales will be handled exclusively by OVG at the American Bank Center, there will be opportunities for local businesses to provide staff for events hosted there.

“I really want to showcase that and show the community that we have a certain standard here at the facility and we’re going to upheld to that," Martin said. "We’re going to uphold to that and then also the folks that we’re going to bring in—our restaurants, our local partners—that want to be a part of that, I think that they’re going to see that and they’re going to want to support that as well.”

More from 3News on KIIITV.com:

Want to send us a news tip?

Put your name and contact information below so we can get in touch with you about your story should we have questions or need more information. We realize some stories are sensitive in nature. Let us know if you'd like to remain anonymous.

If you do not have a photo/video to submit, just click "OK" to skip that prompt.

Before You Leave, Check This Out