Your Business Needs Sporting Hospitality, and The Sports Need Your Business Too
There’s long been a symbiotic relationship between business and sport. In fact, before rugby went professional in 1995, it needed the support of the business community in order to survive. Now however, that goes both ways. Corporate access to the sports and entertainment industry has proven valuable beyond all expectations, enabling business people and executives to enjoy actual face time with their clients at an exciting sporting event.
The industry is now worth nearly £20 billion a year, and supports nearly 450,000 jobs. The massive growth in attendance and in the economy, therefore, is good news for businesses who both enjoy and wish to profit from the sport.
Corporate sporting hospitality is a vital source of income
In 2016, the RFU turned over £407 million, allowing for an £89 million investment back into English rugby. The business of rugby and the demand for closely related industries such as corporate hospitality has resulting in “phenomenal growth, and the subsequent diversification” of the sport itself.
Despite the recent upturn in revenue from high-profile tournaments, it’s not always been plain sailing on the corporate hospitality side of things. Growth in corporate hospitality was relentless until the 2008 recession, at which time the corporate hospitality market took a beating. According to research, the size of the industry fell 2.5% to £1.2billion.
As The Bribery Act 2010 tightened the noose around corporate sports events, ready-made hospitality packages became the safest bet for businesses seeking to impress clients with sporting spectacles without falling foul of the law. Between 2010 and 2014, the market has witnessed consistent growth, driven by businesses recognising the importance of rewarding and incentivising their staff, and attracting new clients as they establish their brand.
What sporting hospitality could do for your business
Rugby hospitality packages officially licensed by the RFU include Smart Experiences’ Twickenham rugby hospitality at the Clubhouse, where guests are invited to rub shoulders with the likes of Brian O’Driscoll, Manu Tuilagi and ambassador Martin Johnson. Head of Smart Experiences, Martin Garner writes “Meeting a sporting star is a big draw and one which often makes the day more memorable.”
Matchday Hospitality at Tottenham Hotspur football stadium is also touted as the “perfect backdrop for building business relationships”. Indeed, corporate hospitality events like these are seeing a very good ROI for businesses. According to Raconteur, more than 80% of those who invest in corporate hospitality claim it is extremely effective at improving relations with clients, and 71% of guests say they are likely to increase the amount they spend with that company as a result.
If you’re a fan of the game, there are significant returns for businesses looking to impress with corporate hospitality. If you’re looking to schmooze clients or win new loyalties, you might just be able to reap huge rewards for both your business and for the sport itself.
Business’ interests in sport make rugby tournaments in particular hugely profitable
Taking over £2.47 million in ticket sales alone, the staging of the Rugby World Cup in 2015 was recorded as the most successful ever. Ahead of the tournament, EY predicted that the record number of international spectators expected to visit the UK would contribute £869m in direct expenditure, with a resulting £2.2bn economic output.
Hospitality has now become a major component of sponsorship deals and the very business of sport. Sporting hospitality is now paramount in all business dealings.
Former English rugby player Austin Healey checked in with an opinion piece in The Telegraph entitled “Rugby is a business and Twickenham delivers the cash”. He writes “the RFU has the most prized and lucrative possession in world rugby: Twickenham… the ultimate cash-cow.”
With a remarkable return on investment, your business needs sporting hospitality, and English Rugby needs your business too. If you’re looking for a way to impress your clients or reward hard working-employees in your business, corporate sporting hospitality at Twickenham is sure to convert.
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