The Louis Vuitton Pacific Series, sailed on the Waitemata Harbour in February, injected at least $16.1 million of additional cash into the Auckland economy according to an independent economic impact report.
The draft report, completed by Covec this week, reveals the yachting regatta resulted in a range of very tangible benefits for Auckland. The report was commissioned by AucklandPlus, the region’s economic development agency, and Auckland City Council.
AucklandPlus Chairman Michael Barnett says the $16.1m cash injection translates to an $11.54m increase in Auckland’s regional GDP.
'To put that in context, in terms of GDP that is more than twice the impact of the 2007 World Netball Championships,' Mr Barnett says.
Auckland City Council, Tourism Auckland and AucklandPlus each invested $20,000 to help secure the event for Auckland, with Auckland City Council providing significant additional in kind support.
Mr Barnett says the economic result is a fantastic return on this investment for the Auckland region.
The Covec report described the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series as a resounding economic success during a challenging period for local businesses. It identified the marine industry as the big winners, generating at least $9m of additional business because of the regatta. That included super yacht maintenance and refit work that would not have occurred in the absence of the event and sales of marine equipment to teams and individuals.
Mr Barnett says the event also has the potential to deliver further economic benefits to Auckland through the international profile it generated.
While domestic television viewing of the regatta was relatively low, internationally the daily highlights packages achieved 340 hours of air time over 30 channels in more than 100 countries, and reached more than 600 million viewers.
'You couldn’t buy that kind of global exposure for Auckland,' Mr Barnett says.
The report also points to the event being well received by locals and visitors with those surveyed very satisfied with the quality of the event and supportive of more high quality events being hosted in Auckland.
'When you add all these things together the event was clearly a fantastic success for Auckland and we would obviously relish the opportunity to host it again.' Mr Barnett says.
He says the success of the Louis Vuitton Pacific Series highlights the value of major events to Auckland’s economy, even in the most challenging of times.
'AucklandPlus has been focussing on what is needed to position Auckland as a major events destination. We need a regional approach to major events in order to secure the right type of events and build a strong portfolio of major events for Auckland.'
Mr Barnett says he is hopeful that the Government’s response to the recently released report from the Royal Commission into Auckland’s Governance will address the need for a regional major events office to provide greater co-ordination and impetus in the development of a portfolio of major events for Auckland.