This equates to at least a $440 million contribution to Auckland’s GDP in 2008 and 7,227 full-time equivalent employees.
The research was commissioned by Auckland City Council to develop a better understanding of the ways in which events contribute to the economic well-being of Auckland.
It focused on events held in the Auckland region in 2008, of which there were at least 1,674, ranging from Pasifika Festival to Air New Zealand Fashion Week.
Total attendance at these events was estimated at 5.82 million. This included 486,000 people who were attracted to Auckland specifically by events, comprising 452,000 domestic visitors and 34,000 international visitors.
Events also generated 719,000 visitor nights in Auckland in 2008.
Councillor Greg Moyle, chairperson of the Arts, Culture and Recreation Committee, says that while there have been studies of the economic benefits of some individual major events, information about the economic benefits generated by the events industry as a whole is not well documented.
“This assessment of the economic contribution of Auckland’s entire events portfolio has demonstrated the importance of the events industry to our region. Events encourage increased employment opportunities and improvements in infrastructure and facilities as well as attracting visitors and additional spend,” he says.
The Mayor of Auckland city, Hon John Banks, says “Not only do events deliver a good economic return, they are critical to the vitality and dynamism of a successful supercity, which I aspire to Auckland becoming.”
A break down of consumption in the Auckland economy directly attributed to events held in the region shows:
- $138 million spent by event organisers on local goods and services required to deliver events in Auckland
- $80 million of discretionary consumption at events in addition to mandatory expenses such as ticket purchases
- $75 million of pre and post event consumption by Auckland residents
- $150 million of consumption by people visiting Auckland specifically to attend an event (excluding mandatory event expenses such as ticket purchases)
- $23 million spent by sponsors on event leveraging
- $13 million spent by local agencies that support the organisation and delivery of events in Auckland
The events portfolio in 2008 did not include any major outliers in economic terms. These events have a profound impact on the contribution that events make to the economy.
For example, the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series held in Auckland earlier this year generated $16 million of additional output, which created a regional GDP impact of $12 million.
“Major international events are significant economic generators that increase international and domestic tourism and spend, and support key business sectors,” says Mr Moyle.
“Over recent years Auckland City Council has made a conscious decision to take a lead role in attracting events to Auckland, with recent successful bids to host the FIBA U19 Men’s World Basketball Championship, the ISA World Junior Surfing Championships and the FIA World Rally Championship. This research reinforces the importance of local government investing in event attraction,” he adds.
The research findings are being shared with all parties who contributed information to the research process.
The outcomes of this research give council’s the ability, collectively, to quantify the benefits that our investment in events delivers to the region’s economy and to ratepayers. The information will also act as a guiding document for the new Auckland Council by providing them insight into the contribution of events to the region.