Tuesday, April 20, 2010

FIFA Rakes Cash, But Slow Ticket Sales May Hurt South Africa

Ticket sales are one of the major sources of World Cup-related revenue for host countries, and South Africa's struggling ticket sales could turn out to be a major problem for the country's economy. Meanwhile, FIFA officials are confident that the tournament will be a financial success for the sport's international governing body.

Match tickets are a "key revenue stream" for a World Cup's local organizers, according to Udesh Pillay, of the Pretoria-based Human Sciences Research Council.

Pillay is editor of the book, "Development and Dreams, The Urban Legacy of the 2010 Football World Cup", the result of a five-year study into the long-term impact of the World Cup.

He notes that the local organizing committee of the Germany World Cup in 2006 made a profit of $237.5 million, "partly due to the near-capacity sales of match tickets."

South Africa 2010, because of a unique set of factors, may not be able to maximize this revenue stream as other hosts have done.

South Africa sacrifices short-term profits, hopes for long-term benefits
The Canadian Press
April 19, 2010