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Potential economic impact of the Rugby World Cup on a Host Nation


Potential economic impact of the Rugby World

The Rugby World Cup (‘RWC’) is the world’s third largest major sporting event, commanding a substantial and growing presence in the global sporting calendar. Since the inaugural competition in 1987, the world’s best Rugby players have gathered every four years to compete in the Game’s showpiece event and, for the 44 days of the competition, all eyes are focussed on the Host Nation. All indicators show that the RWC has grown spectacularly since it was first staged only 21 years ago.

The Sports Business Group were delighted to have the opportunity to work with Rugby World Cup Limited to assess the potential economic impact of the Rugby World Cup on a Host Nation.

Download a copy of the report, Potential economic impact of the Rugby World Cup on a Host Nation (PDF, 1035 KB).

Global prestige

The announcement in August 2008 that ten nations had expressed an interest in hosting RWC 2015 and RWC 2019 demonstrates the global prestige associated with this event.

In awarding the RWC 2015 and RWC 2019 tournaments concurrently in July 2009, the IRB will assist the chosen Host Nations by providing a timescale that facilitates thorough planning for the event – allowing them to prepare, stimulate interest and enthusiasm, develop local and national government support and generate maximum economic benefit.

Economic benefits

Our analysis confirms that RWC has the potential to deliver a very significant economic benefit to a Host Nation and, for a number of potential Host Nations, this can be achieved without the large scale infrastructure development which can introduce increased cost and financial uncertainly to the hosting of a major sporting event.

The increasing understanding of the impact of hosting major events and the increasing creativity and sophistication used to maximise the economic potential for the Host Nation dictates that a number of stakeholders will be involved in addition to the Host Union.

RWC benefits extend significantly beyond the Game itself and, if strong partnerships amongst key stakeholders in Host Nations are formed with time to develop long term strategies, the benefits are likely to be significant.

Download a copy of the report,  Potential economic impact of the Rugby World Cup on a Host Nation (PDF, 1035 KB)

Related press release 

Learn more about the IRB and Rugby World Cup


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