The Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL) is steadily growing as one of the most popular summer events in Guyana, and the numbers are now testimony to this fact. Unlike the previous five years, CPL had a historic 2018 in Guyana where the country moved from hosting four-five games to a massive seven, inclusive of two play-off games.
As expected, the additional games were well received in the home of the Amazon Warriors where patrons flocked the Providence National Stadium each night, resulting in seven sold-out matches in Guyana.
In the case where crowd photos were the only testament to the support that CPL and Guyana were receiving, an enormous figure disclosed by “the biggest party in sport” has now proven that those assumptions were correct.
“It’s not surprising that we increased the revenue obviously, because we had more games here, but I think what did surprise us is that we were able to get the support that we got across all seven games and that’s very exciting going forward.”
Those were the sentiments expressed by CPL’s Chief Operating Officer (COO), Pete Russell as he reflected on a whopping US$25 million impact that was made by the Hero CPL on Guyana’s economy in 2018.
That figure was recently revealed by Hero CPL, taking into account seven matches played at the Providence National Stadium on August 9, 11, 12 and September 8, 9, 11 and 12, 2018.
Last year’s US$25,515,816 figure is an 80 per cent increase on the 2017 figure.
In the exclusive interview with Guyana Times Sport, Russell went on to list a few sectors that were considered in the enormous figure.
“So, last year, we provided over $25 million in terms of economic impact for Guyana and that’s made up in a number of ways. Visitors coming in, what we spend in the country and then what local vendors are making themselves. As well as all the promotional activity that goes on, because we increased our TV viewers to over 200 million globally,” Russell explained.
In addition to this, Hero CPL was responsible for some 468 jobs created and 7654 hotel rooms filled in Guyana.
Speaking on the boom in the hospitality sector, Russell stated, “So the Guyana brand is getting a great deal of visibility around the world, but if you drill Guyana to the numbers; what is fascinating for us is because we split the season in August and September, actual arrivals in Guyana are up 40 per cent. CPL is obviously the biggest thing that happened in September.”
In a breakdown of the logistics, the total media exposure for Guyana came in at US$8.2 million, which is more than twice the number that was calculated in 2017.
Furthermore, the “biggest party in sport”, CPL expended US$1.29 million in Guyana for the duration of the 2018 season. Almost half of that sum, 43 per cent to be exact, went towards suppliers and local staff. With US$978,000 spent in 2017 as comparison, the 2018 number was a more-than-significant increase.
For Hero CPL, this increase is a key aspect of their vision.
“For us, yes, what we do on the pitch is very important, but it’s also important that we provide that assistance …around the region, so economic impact is a large part of our key performance indicators (KPIs) in terms of performance,” Russell explained.
CPL is eager to return for the 2019 season, which will begin on August 21. With the possibility of seven games being hosted at Providence, the COO is upbeat about the electric crowd that will once again overflow the Guyanese venue.
“To fill the stadium seven times over was a major achievement, and again, it’s all about fans. We don’t experience anything like this across the Caribbean. They’re great cricket lovers; they love to support their team.” (Jemima Holmes)