Trends

The Economics of the World Cup

On June 11, nearly 100,000 soccer fans from around the world will gather at Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg to watch the opening game of the 2010 World Cup. Millions more will tune in their television sets at home. During the four weeks to follow, the world’s eyes and ears will be directed towards South Africa, following one of the world’s premier sporting events. Soccer may not be overwhelmingly popular in the United States, but on a global scale, the World Cup is the largest sporting event in terms of viewership. Collectively, more than 26 billion viewers watched the games of the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany: 24.2 billion at home and 2.1 billion out of home.

For everyone involved of putting together this event — sponsors, advertisers, FIFA and the host countries — this means one thing: Major bucks exchanging hands. The 2006 World Cup in Germany was considered the most monetarily-successful to date, but the 2010 event is expected to break that record. With that in mind, we take a look at some of the main financial aspects of the World Cup: corporate sponsorships, revenues, costs, and the financial effect