Business Benefit from Sports Events study shows

In the light of the glaringly obvious negative press that has come out of the Chamber of Commerce’s survey of businesses post Rugby Test, I’ve decided that, instead of falling into the all too familiar and easy Kiwi route of negative publicity, I’ll look at the positives.

In July 2008 the All Blacks and the Springboks, possibly the two most marketable brands in world rugby played a very important test match in Dunedin. The game was a sell out and it was estimated that the match bought in several million dollars from tourists and fans. Today the Chamber of Commerce released a study that showed that over 17% of Dunedin businesses benefited economically from the test. That is brilliant. Nearly 20% of business in the Dunedin area benefited from one solitary rugby match. Imagine if we were able to get 1 regular top flight rugby test and at least one minnow test (England?) a year.

Of course the ODT reporter tried to show this as a negative thing. How can this be a negative thing, that 17% of business had positive economic benefit from a one off event? I’m sure there are business out there that just simply aren’t going to see little if any economic benefit from such events. For instance, would Nichols Landscaping really expect to see money coming into their business from a rugby test in the town? Would (actually possibly?) Suds dry-cleaning, expect to see a measurable increase in business activity? Then there are the other business that may have made money from the event without it showing up in the numbers explicitly. Case in point, a rugby test in Dunedin in the middle of winter with snow on the hills just the week before, I went out and got extra wood and coal (which I wouldn’t normally do) for the folk from the North Island whom feel that cold. How could my coal and wood people measure that increased business without me explicitly telling them in the purchase?

Of course the likes of the pubs, restaurants, motels and hotels were going to record a measurable spike in income over this weekend. If the story had read, “Hospitality Industry Hit Hard By Test” I would have been alarmed. But “leaky plumbers” or “printing business” not really showing any real increase over a rugby test is remarkable for how utterly unremarkable this news is.

Imagine if these 17% of businesses were joined by another 10-20% of businesses in other sectors whom would benefit from the hosting of events other than rugby. Just for instance imagine if the Edinburgh Military Tattoo was to come to Dunedin (quite possible). The likes of the businesses other than pubs, the Edinburgh Shop etc would see a economic plus. This is the challenge of the CST, to get as many varied activities into the new stadium and conference facility, to spread the economic benefit across the wider community. I don’t know, lets use our imagination and we managed to get the New Zealand Arboricultural Association to host the Southern Hemisphere conference here in Dunedin. Apart from the obvious immediate benefactors (Saw and Mower, and hospitality), what’s to stop some industrious folk from Middlemarch organising a bus (or 10) of delegates heading in land to run workshops in some of the most stunning landscapes in the world. That’s called business initiative and positive economic impact.

Still as I keep saying time and time again, we are only limited by our imagination (and seemingly there is a huge lack of imagination out there).

{http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/18283/rugby-test-benefited-few-businesses}

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12 Comments

Filed under Media, Stadiums

12 responses to “Business Benefit from Sports Events study shows

  1. Peter Entwisle

    Paul, you are still under the illusion there would be conferences at the Awatea Street stadium. Check the documents. They have been deleted.

  2. Peter, they haven’t. That’s been refuted.

    See my comments to Meg. The last conference I went to, was with 2500 delegates, not a single carpet in sight, and AV was limited, but that wasn’t the point of the conference. How much carpet is used at Field Days at Mystery Creek?

  3. Meg Davidson

    See MY comments on your insultingly named disinformation thread. I don’t know how much longer I can be bothered with this.

  4. Meg,

    If claims are made in the media with the express intention of seeking public opinion to side said claims, which are then refuted, how can that be anything but a disinformation campaign. Twice in two weeks now, serious claims about the nature of the development have been made, resulting in OTD coverage, both have now been discredited or refuted.

    Just because it won’t have a Chandelier, carpet and the latest catering facilities, does not exclude it from hosting conferences.

    If 10, 50,100 or even 1500 people are gathered in the stadium and the sign on the door says Conference, then it is a conference, regardless of the needs of Ms Copeman and her style of conference facility. The very fact that I have been to conferences with carpet, hardwood and temporary flooring, doesn’t mean 2 out of three were conferences and the other was a gathering?

    To say that this won’t hold conferences, you would first need not conferences to have taken place. Because until an event hasn’t or can’t happen, you can not prove it can’t. Can you prove that this facility won’t hold any conferences. Just because they aren’t the ones that are perceived in the narrow confines of how one traditionally holds said events, does not mean they aren’t conferences.

    Some of the biggest science conferences in the world, held in Asia have upwards of 20,000+ delegates. No matter how posh the kitchens of the new stadium would be, they wouldn’t be able to cater for that amount of people.

    When they said, lets hold the Rugby World Cup in NZ, and some typical kiwi knocker piped up “there’s nowhere to put people to bed at night”, some bright spark said, well lets get a cruise ship or two in town and house them there. All it takes is a little (and I really do mean little) imagination, and an enthusiasm for things to get done. The StS and it’s followers, have none of the latter, so find it hard to muster any of the former for all of the so called barriers to this being a success. That is why people like me, who are dead keen on the idea of this facility, see the prospect of limited catering at the facility, as a positive for some enterprising local firm to say, I want some of that action. I have all of the enthusiasm in the world for this project, and so far every hurdle that has been posed as the last nail in the coffin, has only been a pleasing exercise in “ok so we are going to do it this way now”.

    Turn this right on it’s head. Cut out the costs of providing a first class dining hall for the limited use it gets, and pump a fraction of that money into a local firm, hiring local people, with local produce to feed overseas and local delegates at conferences.

    Heck, I see that the old sand turf is being ripped up soon. Lets put that in storage and use that as a sub surface for whatever event that doesn’t want to be on grass. It could be down for just a day, not damaging the grass, and stored away somewhere else. I like the turf, it’s firm and would be great laid over temporary ground covers. But then I don’t need carpet to fulfil my conference needs, just interesting and challenging conference material.

    See I want to see this succeed, so I am looking for ways for it to happen. You want it to fail, so the slightest imperfection is the be all and end all of the thing. Simple really.

    Oh go on, keep it up for a while, you’re loving it.

    Correction, a couple of the rooms hosting events at the Society of Newspaper Designers conference I went to in Boston Sept last year did in fact have carpet, I just didn’t go to those streams. Seems I missed out, but then coverage of the War wasn’t as riveting as Sports News Design.

  5. Meg Davidson

    Nah, sorry Paul, this will be my last visit here. You’re defending the indefensible and it’s getting totally silly. Yes, there have been claims and counter-claims in the media, but to say that the refutations of the CST have been credible, let alone final, is stretching the truth.

  6. Well thanks for stopping by Meg.

    Sorry Meg Child Pronography is indefensible.

    And you are tying to disprove something that hasn’t happened and in all reality in 3 years time from now has every chance of happening.

  7. Peter Entwisle

    Paul said:

    “Peter, they haven’t. That’s been refuted.”

    Check again. The original provision has been deleted. That hasn’t been refuted but in effect acknowledged by Malcolm Farry who now says only the basics for conferences will be provided.

    No doubt they will. Trouble is, so far no-one is queuing up to use even that minimal provision. As for the original pre-Horwath idea, that’s long gone.

  8. Peter Entwisle

    Paul said:

    “If claims are made in the media with the express intention of seeking public opinion to side said claims, which are then refuted, how can that be anything but a disinformation campaign. Twice in two weeks now, serious claims about the nature of the development have been made, resulting in OTD coverage, both have now been discredited or refuted.”

    Paul, a denial is not a refutation. Also in the case of the provision for conferences – read what is actually said. (Also what I pointed out above.) Malcolm Farry hasn’t “refuted” the claims about the lack of conference facilities or likely users – he has basically acknowledged them.

    Your first sentence above is hard to understand but the StS has put out no claims which have been “refuted” though some have been denied. To maintain your claim StS is running a disinformation campaign you need to show a) their statements aren’t true; b) they knew this when they made them.

    Please feel free to try.

  9. Peter Entwisle

    Paul said:

    “All it takes is a little (and I really do mean little) imagination, and an enthusiasm for things to get done. The StS and it’s followers, have none of the latter, so find it hard to muster any of the former for all of the so called barriers to this being a success.”

    As I have said elsewhere, this is not about imagination but credibility. You’re not on topic Paul.

  10. Peter Entwisle

    Paul said:

    “See I want to see this succeed, so I am looking for ways for it to happen. You want it to fail, so the slightest imperfection is the be all and end all of the thing. Simple really.”

    It’s apparent Paul you ARE looking for ways for it to succeed, but that’s where you’re missing the point.

    We don’t start from a wish for it to succeed or fail. All we’re doing is looking at the proposal to work out which is likely to happen.

    It’s not slight imperfections we’re concerned about but big ones like the difference between being a regular venue for substantial conferences and a little used marginal one.

    Unlike you we don’t let our wishes determine the outcome of our enquiries. Simple really.

  11. Peter Entwisle

    Paul said:

    “And you are tying to disprove something that hasn’t happened and in all reality in 3 years time from now has every chance of happening.”

    No, we’re disproving claims made here and now. If we all approach the matter with open minds the future may yet take care of itself.

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