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Rugby WC to drive $1.67 bn into global sports economy: MasterCard

MUMBAI: The on-going Rugby World Cup 2011 could generate $1.67 billion for the global sports economy with overseas visitors to New Zealand generating $654 million, according to new research commissioned by MasterCard Worldwide.


MasterCard‘s research - the Economic Impact on Global Rugby Part IV: Rugby World Cup 2011- finds that sport associated economic activity may be worth up to $11.7 billion to the New Zealand economy by the end of the decade.


The research is the fourth installment in a series commissioned by MasterCard Worldwide and undertaken by the Centre for the International Business of Sport (CIBS) at Coventry University, following economic impact reports on the 2010 Six Nations and Tri Nations Rugby Tournaments and a report on Rugby‘s Emerging Markets in April.


 
The latest installment examines the value of RWC 2011 by looking at the short-term commerce flow through international fans spending in bars, clubs, shops, hotels, bookmakers and inside host stadia, along with spending by sponsors and organisations on marketing in the cities around matches. It also examines the longer-term economic impacts on New Zealand‘s economy and the legacy of the Tournament as a whole.


CIBS researcher Dave Arthur said that the tournament would stand out from its predecessors. "This Tournament will be like no other: it will attract stronger than ever interest across the world, which will in turn boost commercial interest in and activity around the event," he said.


The report finds that by the end of the decade, consumer expenditure in the New Zealand sports economy may be worth up to $1 billion. Increased tourism, civic sponsorship and business development resulting from the Tournament is estimated to be $1.21 billion, while the number of people working in sport-related occupations could rise to between 52,000 and 58,000 by the end of the decade, according to the report.


Other factors likely to enhance short-term and long-term economic activity include the later time scheduling for RWC 2011 matches and the ongoing development of Rugby in emerging market countries such as Romania, which has seen a 222 per cent increase of Rugby participation since Rugby World Cup 2003, and Russia, who will be competing in their first Rugby World Cup.


Rugby World Cup‘s enhanced brand value: The tournament will attract stronger than ever interest across the world due to the increased strength of the Rugby World Cup brand and the significance of it returning to its spiritual home-Rugby World Cup 2011 will be the first time the Tournament has returned to the same host nation and the same Final venue since 1987.


Based on advanced ticket sales more than 95,000 international fans will be visiting New Zealand for RWC 2011, which kicked off on Friday night (September 9th). Total ticket sales, which (including domestic sales) are expected to reach 1.35 million, will generate revenue of $224.5 million for tournament organisers.


CIBS director at Coventry University Professor Simon Chadwick said, "For the Tournament to be contested in the sport‘s spiritual home with the host nation ranked as number one in the world and among the strongest sport brands in the world, further enhances brand equity and the appeal of Rugby World Cup.


"Rugby World Cup is one of the top global sports events in the world behind the Olympics and the FIFA World Cup. Not only will New Zealand be benefiting from its impact and legacy for years to come, but the broader global sports economy will welcome the boost that this Tournament delivers."


The report says the late scheduling will also offer a boost to broadcasters with a global audience of around 4 billion people expected to tune in to watch the tournament.

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