A Danish recipe for success

This article was produced in association with Sport Event Denmark

For more than 10 years, Sport Event Denmark has been a trusted partner in bidding for and staging events in Denmark.

According to Sport Event Denmark chief executive Lars Lundov, the so-called “event triangle” is the cornerstone of hosting major international sporting events in the country.

“The triangle consists of the national federation, the host city and Sport Event Denmark,” Lundov says, outlining the recipe for the Danish model.

“Then you mix it with innovative thinking, solid event management and a robust economy. Then you dress it up with that special culture of Danish volunteering and an eye for epic settings. Finally, you let it rise for 10 years and more.”

The organisation was established and funded by the Danish government and posts a success rate of 80 per cent in winning bids.

“The Olympics is the biggest sporting event in the world regarding participating sports, countries and athletes,” Lundov adds.

“An Olympic host city will forever be an Olympic host city, boosting the brand of the host nation. However, every sporting event has the potential to put the sports and athletes on display.

“Most of the events will add to the brand of the city and nation, putting the focus on the sport and its athletes. For example, take athletics – an Olympic sport that gets a lot of attention both at the Games and in between.


Denmark has a great reputation in hosting running events. The country previously hosted the IAAF World Half Marathon Championships in 2014 and is currently preparing a game-changing set-up for the IAAF World Cross Country Championships next year.”

Denmark has succeeded in securing and staging many significant World and European championships in Olympic and non-Olympic sports over the years in all parts of the country, as well as a number of General Assemblies for international federations, the IOC Session and Olympic Congress in 2009 and the 2017 edition of SportAccord.

The ingredients

2018 – an epic year of World Championships in Olympic sports
From May 4-20, Denmark will play host to the 2018 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship at the Royal Arena in Copenhagen and Jyske Bank Boxen in Herning. It will be the first time that Denmark will have hosted the IIHF’s flagship event.

From July 6-14, Denmark will host the 2018 Fyn ITU Multisport World Championships Festival. Visitors from all over the world will experience a huge international triathlon festival consisting of five world championships over nine days.

From July 30-August 12, Denmark will stage the Hempel Sailing World Championships for all Olympic Classes in Aarhus. Aarhus, also known as the City of Sails, has a long track record of hosting sailing events.

2019 – more World Championships
Denmark has already secured the following events to be staged in 2019 in various places in Denmark:

  • IHF Men’s World Handball Championships 2019 (Herning & Copenhagen – together with Germany)
  • UCI Cyclo-Cross World Championship 2019 (Bogense)
  • IAAF World Cross Country Championships 2019 (Aarhus)
  • WCF World Women’s Curling Championships 2019 (Silkeborg)
  • World Championship Three Cushion 2019 (Randers)

2020 – a celebratory atmosphere
Creating a festival atmosphere and engaging in a celebration of sports is important to Sport Event Denmark, the host cities and, not least, the national federations.

  • Uefa Euro 2020 (Copenhagen)
  • 2020 WTF World Taekwondo Poomsae Championships (Vejle)
  • IOF World Urban Orienteering Championships 2020 (Vejle, Kolding, Fredericia)

2021 – hitting the target
Choosing the correct destinations for the events is front-of-mind in Denmark for the events lined up in 2021.
•    ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships 2021 (Gladsaxe/Copenhagen)
•    FIG Artistic Gymnastics World Championships 2021 (Copenhagen)
•    WDF World Cup 2021 (Esbjerg)

2022, 2023 – rising success
Building on 10 years of success and working strategically means that Denmark has a long-term approach to securing events.
•    UCI World Mountain Bike Championships 2022 (Haderslev)
•    IHF Women’s Handball World Championships 2023 (together with Norway and Sweden) Z

Most recent

Three-times World Series winners the San Francisco Giants are turning property developers with the Mission Rock mixed-use development across the way from their Oracle Park home. Barry M. Bloom examines a project 15 years in the making.

IPO prospectus for parent company of the Infront agency and Ironman triathlon operator reveals strategy to focus on mass participation in China and predictions for the growth of the Chinese sports sector.

The Campeonato Brasileiro Série A will be the only major football league in the world without international, local-language distribution in 2019. Callum McCarthy looks at why Brazilian club football lags behind its European counterparts.

The United States Tennis Association's successful bid to host the inaugural Fortnite World Cup finals at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows, New York, is part of a wider strategy to introduce the refurbished facility to a new and younger audience. Story by Bob Williams.