The International Rugby Board has welcomed the findings of a major new study which estimated that Rugby World Cup 2011 will generate US$1.67 billion for the global sports economy.
Conducted by the Centre for the International Business of Sport (CIBS) on behalf of MasterCard Worldwide, The Economic Impact on Global Rugby Part IV: Rugby World Cup 2011, concludes that the economic impact of Rugby World Cup is profound and that it has huge potential to create a lasting legacy.
Over 95,000 overseas visitors are expected at RWC 2011 in New Zealand, 30,000 more than at RWC 2003 in Australia. As a result, the report estimates that the total economic activity from overseas visitors may amount to US$654 million (NZ$727 million). This short-term commerce flow will come through international spending in bars, clubs, shops, hotels, city attractions, bookmakers and inside host stadia, along with sponsors and organisations spending on marketing in cities around matches.
In the long-term, the study suggests that the economic impact from increased tourism, civic sponsorship and business development as a result of the event is likely to be NZ$1.32 billion. This reinforces findings following the FIFA World Cup 2010, when 92% of visitors indicated that they would recommend South Africa to friends and relatives, and 90% said they would visit again. In addition to the hosting and sporting benefits, Rugby World Cup plays a pivotal role in the growth and prosperity of Rugby worldwide. All commercial revenues generated by the Tournament are reinvested in Rugby around the world to increase competitiveness and ensure more men, women and children can access the sport. This is done through the IRB’s £45 million Strategic Investment Programme for the period 2009-2012. The total investment for the period is £150 million. This includes £17 million in Oceania and £4.5 million in New Zealand.