America’s Cup economic assessment planned

  • Crowd-puller: the America's Cup has been hailed a resounding success. But what was the extent of the event's economic impact?

    Crowd-puller: the America's Cup has been hailed a resounding success. But what was the extent of the event's economic impact?

A group economic post-mortem examination is to be conducted to assess the impact of the Louis Vuitton America’s Cup World Series Bermuda. The Bermuda Government, along with the Bermuda Tourism Authority, the America’s Cup Event Authority and ACBDA are working on a joint review of how businesses, vendors, visitor numbers and hotel occupancy were affected.

Economic development minister Grant Gibbons added that the most comprehensive economic impact study would not be held until after the 35th America’s Cup in 2017.

He told The Royal Gazette: “The main event for us is 2017 so we are probably not going to do an overall economic assessment until after then but in the meantime we will get feedback.

“Anecdotally the vendors out on Front Street seemed to be doing a bustling business. I have heard lots of good reports.

“Both the local and overseas sponsors are absolutely delighted and I also hear that the TV coverage was one of the best because there were so many boats out there and they did a nice job of framing the course. It worked a lot better in that respect than Gothenburg and Portsmouth.”

Dr Gibbons said that the World Series provided the opportunity for organisers to work on any issues that needed to be addressed ahead of the finals including internet bandwidth limitations that saw some lose connection over the weekend.

There was a slight increase in private jets arriving on the Island in the run-up to the race weekend. Airport general manager Aaron Adderley said: “In the days leading up to the race weekend we had about just over 30 private jets on the ground at any one time and that is considered slightly higher than average than it would be during our peak period in the summer. A peak day during the summer period you can expect around 25 aircraft or thereabouts.

“From a commercial side in the couple of days prior to the weekend we had the arriving flights coming in at load factors just under 80 per cent. There was certainly a bit of activity in the lead up to the weekend.”

On water operations chairman Ralph Richardson said that close to 1,200 boats registered as spectators and that he had never seen so many boats together at one event in Bermuda.

Mr Richardson, who is also chairman of the Bermuda Water Safety Council, estimated that there were 10,000 people on the water.

“There were twice as many boats as you see at Non Mariners but there will be multiple more numbers of people due to all the tour boats out. We have been around on boats for decades and I have never seen that many boats in one place in Bermuda — in the Great Sound or anywhere.”

He said that aside from the collision between Swedish AC45F catamaran Artemis and a nearby judge boat there were no significant incidents — only a few who infringed on the course and were dispatched by the marshals and police.

Premier Tickets sold out the America’s Cup Jam Presented By Fidelity International on Saturday night featuring Maxi Priest and Shaggy. Some 2,500 tickets were sold but it has not yet been calculated how many actually turned up and had their tickets scanned.

BTA chief executive Bill Hanbury said: “Overall anecdotally we were very happy with the way the event played out. I know hotels had a good weekend and many restaurants and special event companies had a spectacular weekend and a lot of revenue was generated.

“It was a great week for Bermuda tourism and when the figures come back we will see a weekend that was well worth the investment we have made in the event.”

Meanwhile, police thanked the community along with their security partners for a quiet weekend.

A single minor marine incident occurred on Sunday at about 1.35pm, when a 52-year-old Pembroke man had to be detained and escorted out of the race area after speeding erratically on a jet ski.

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Published Oct 20, 2015 at 8:00 am (Updated Oct 20, 2015 at 10:05 am)

America’s Cup economic assessment planned

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