Charlotte MSA sports: A $2 billion shot in the arm

Thursday, March 1, 2012

by Dave Yochum

Source: Business Today

In 2011, sports and teams were worth on the order of $2.1 billion to the Charlotte economy, driving some 23,000 jobs in the region. These statistics came out of a study, "The Economic Impact of Sports and Sports Events on the Charlotte MSA Economy," led by Dr. John E. Connaughton of Belk College of Business at UNCC. Connaughton teaches Economics.

Connaughton posited that with almost 5 million people attending regional sporting functions, anywhere from youth divisions to professional, sports in the Charlotte Metro Area are a critical economic and tourist venture. His study indicates the total on-site revenue for all professional and college sports teams in 2011 was $700.68 million. Total off-site revenue was $99.66 million. These combine for a total revenue figure for all professional and college sports teams of $800.66 million in 2011.

Then there are special events that include races at Charlotte Motor Speedway, zMAX Dragway, and The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway; tournaments and one-time games from 2011 like the Belk Bowl; the ACC Championship game, the CIAA Tournament, NCAA Regionals, East Carolina University vs. UNC Chapel Hill; Gold Cup International Soccer; and the PGA Tournament.

The total on-site revenue for all special events in 2011 was $369.64 million. Total off-site revenue was $244.92 million. These combine for a total revenue figure for all special events of $614.56 million in 2011.

The groupings Connaughton labeled to find the statistics were Professional and College teams, special events, youth events and media production. The study entails attendance, budgets and employment concerning the sporting events, video production and youth tournaments involvement in the region. Read the study at www.charlottesports.org.

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