ICC Sydney appoints new exec chef and director of business services

International Convention Centre (ICC) Sydney has bolstered its culinary and business services departments with a few new appointments.

Executive sous chef Dylan Sanding has been promoted to executive chef. He will be joined by Rakesh Pillai, who will transition from chef de cuisine to executive sous chef.

Additional appointments within the ICC Sydney kitchen brigade include five sous chef internal advancements, one new team member joining as a sous chef, and a further two junior sous chef promotions.

ICC Sydney’s director of culinary services, Lynell Peck, said Sanding’s appointment was not only a testament to the creativity and professionalism he has displayed since joining the team in 2016, but also demonstrates the positive impact of the training and career progression opportunities that are provided at the centre.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for both Dylan and Rakesh to step up and lead the team. Both are wonderfully passionate about world-class cuisine, drawing on a diverse range of cultures and valuing the high quality of our suppliers’ produce and showcasing it front and centre for our guests,” she said.

Commenting on his promotion, Sanding said: “As more events return and alongside Rakesh and the talented culinary team, I am looking forward to collaborating with clients, with suppliers and with my team.

“There is so much talent and so many cultures represented within our kitchens, which we’ll be drawing on as we create menus with the best local produce on offer.”

The venue has also welcomed Martin Clapham (pictured above) as its new director of business services, responsible for overseeing and controlling all of ICC Sydney’s corporate, financial and ICT operations.

Clapham joins ICC Sydney from Cliftons Venues, where he was the global chief financial officer, and also currently holds a director role on the Global Board of the International Association of Conference Centres and Treasurer Asia Pacific.

ICC Sydney CEO Geoff Donaghy said Clapham will bolster the venue’s commercial and strategic capabilities, playing a pivotal role in its recovery from the pandemic.

“Martin brings with him an outstanding record of achievement and we are confident he will play an important role in the venue’s future success, driving the strategic direction of the business while offering leadership across departments.”

Clapham said he is looking forward to playing a key role on ICC Sydney’s executive team, with an immediate focus on the venue’s COVID-19 recovery strategy.

“I am delighted to join the award-winning ICC Sydney, drawing on my experience in the events sector and a number of industries to lead business services,” he said.

“It has been an incredibly tough year, but ICC Sydney’s industry-leading response to the crisis stood out to me as exceptional.

“I am looking forward to now working with its world-class team to drive the highest standards of business excellence as the venue moves through the phases of recovery in 2021.”