AO 2020 delivers record benefits to Victoria

  • Tennis Australia

Australian Open 2020 delivered record economic benefits to Victoria according to a new Neilson Sports report, as well as attracting the biggest global broadcast audience in the history of the tournament.  

Australian Open 2020 delivered record economic benefits to Victoria according to a new Neilson Sports report.

Melbourne’s Grand Slam injected $387.7 million into the Victorian economy – up more than 12 percent from $347.2 million in 2019.

“We are proud of the significant contribution the Australian Open makes to our economy and the promotion opportunities it provides to Melbourne and Victoria,” Australian Open Tournament Director and Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley said.

“These are big numbers that boost so many industries, particularly the hospitality, events and tourism sector, all of which have been particularly hard-hit, firstly by the devastating bushfires in December and January, and this year during the pandemic

Our team is working hard on staging [a 2021] event with the most rigorous biosecurity measures in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of everyone.
Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley

It’s also shows us how critical it will be to stage a successful – and safe – Australian Open in January, and our team is working hard on staging an event with the most rigorous biosecurity measures in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of everyone.

“Today we’ve also announced some remarkable broadcast exposure figures that are yet another indication of the enormous scale and reach of the Australian Open. As an example, if we added up the broadcast hours viewed globally it would amount to close to 1000 years of coverage, demonstrating yet again the uplift to the business since bringing the host broadcast production in-house more than five years ago.”

Over the past decade the Australian Open has contributed more than $2.71 billion in economic benefits to Victoria.

The tournament has also generated 1775 jobs for the state - 529 of them in the accommodation, hotels and café sector, with another 247 jobs in trade services.

Of the record-breaking 812,174 attendees in 2020, 54 percent were from beyond Melbourne with 13 percentfrom overseas.

Visitors spent an average of $209 per day, generating 574,970 hotel bed nights. 87 percent of all visitors surveyed said they were likely to recommend others to visit Victoria as a result of their stay.

“These figures highlight just how important the Australian Open is to Victoria’s economy, and demonstrate how Melbourne is a world leader for major sporting events,” Victorian Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula MP said.

“The Victorian Government has invested $972 million into the Melbourne Park Redevelopment, ensuring the Australian Open remains in Melbourne until at least 2036.”

The tournament also broke global viewership records with more 99,556 broadcast coverage hours produced for Australian Open 2020, up 12 percent on 2019, or the equivalent of 11.4 years of coverage. There were 813.8 million broadcast hours viewed around the globe in 2020, equivalent to 928.9 centuries.

In China viewership skyrocketed during the final weekend of the tournament with 193 million hours viewed, up 68 percent on 2019, despite dedicated TV coverage hours decreasing by 2 percent.

Back in Australia, the fourth round match between Nick Kyrgios and Rafael Nadal still remains the country’s most watched program of the year so far, while the men’s final between Novak Djokovic and Dominic Thiemis the fourth most watched program. The women’s final between Sofia Kenin and Garbine Muguruza had an average audience of 1.193 million and peaked at 1.639 million.

Key Economic Benefits

  • In 2020 $387.7 million of Real Gross State Product was generated by the Australian Open, up 12 percent from $347.2 million in 2019.
  • The economic benefit of the Australian Open for the past 10 years is equivalent to more than $2.71 billion.
  • The yearly benefit of the AO has increased by 142 percent since the 2010 tournament, which generated an estimated $160 million in benefit to the state.

Jobs

  • Australian Open 2020 generated 1775 full time equivalent jobs.
  • There were 529 jobs in accommodation, hotels and café sector and another 247 jobs in trade services as a result of the tournament.

Tourism facts

  • 46 percent of attendees were local with 41 percent from intrastate and interstate and 13 percent from overseas.
  • 574,970 bed nights were booked as a result of Australian Open 2020 providing a much needed boost to Victorian tourism.
  • The average daily spend per person was $209.

Global viewership*

  • There were 99,556 broadcast coverage hours produced for Australian Open 2020 up 12 percent on 2019 – that’s the equivalent 11.4 years of coverage.
  • 813.8 million broadcast hours were viewed around the globe in 2020 – equivalent to 928.9 centuries.
  • Since taking over the Host Broadcast in 2015, Tennis Australia has produced more than half a century of broadcast coverage or 499,686 hours and there has been more than 5146 centuries viewed worldwide.
  • Australian Open 2020 aired live in more than 215 territories on more than 52 different TV channels, reaching more than 900 million homes daily.
  • All match courts were streamed live and free to watch on ausopen.com in more than 75 territories including Argentina, Brazil and Mexico, with streaming available on the AO App in more than 25 territories.

Chinese viewership skyrockets in 2020*

  • There were 193 million hours viewed in China in 2020 up 68 percent on 2019 despite dedicated TV coverage hours decreasing 2 percent.
  • Broadcast viewership in China skyrocketed in 2020 with the average viewing audience in mainland China more than double per hour of that in 2019.
  • There were 159 million dedicated TV hours viewed in China up 82 percent on 2019.
  • CCTV-5 increased their live coverage hours by 57 percent from the quarterfinals which resulted in a 39 percent jump overall.

AO remains most viewed program in Australia so far this year**

  • The fourth round match between Nick Kyrgios and Rafael Nadal remains the most watched program of 2020 in Australia while the men’s final between Novak Djokovic and Dominic Thiem is the fourth most watched program.
  • The Australian Open had a cumulative reach of 13.2 million people in Australia.
  • The average audience viewership increased 16.8 percent on the Nine main channel.
  • Live content on digital platform 9Now increased 99 percent to 218.2 million minutes while streams increased 60 percent to 9.1 million.
  • The men’s final was the highest live streamed match of the tournament with 13.7 million live minutes up 145 percent on 2019. The final also achieved a national peak audience of 2.688 million and an average audience of 2.043 million.
  • The women’s final between Sofia Kenin and Garbine Muguruza had an average audience of 1.193 million and peaked at 1.639 million.

Attendance

  • A record crowd of 812,174 fans shared the excitement of the Australian Open, smashing the previous attendance record of 796,435 from 2019.
  • For the fourth time in the tournament’s history attendance in the first week surpassed 500,000 fans, with 550,645 attendees, breaking the previous record of 537,226 for Australian Open 2019.
  • Seven days (sessions combined) drew record crowds including the first Tuesday, first Friday, middle Saturday, middle Sunday and second Monday, second Friday and Men’s Final.
  • The middle Saturday attracted a record attendance of 93,709.
  • The Australia Day public holiday on Monday 27 January attracted 58,704 fans to the AO.
  • 7.17 million people have attended the Australian Open over the last 10 years.

Key perception benefits to Victoria

  • 87 percent of visitors who attended Australian Open 2020 likely to recommend others to visit Victoria
  • 99 percent of Victorian residents surveyed say it is important for Victoria to host the Australian Open each year.
  • 93 percent of Victorian residents agree that hosting the Australian Open increases the international profile of Melbourne.

About the study

Tennis Australia commissioned Nielsen Sports to conduct a study of the economic impact of Australian Open 2020. Economic cost benefit analysis using Computable General Equilibrium modelling was provided by the Centre of Policy Studies at Victorian University.

  • The 2019 tournament $347.2 million to the state
  • The 2018 tournament was worth $293.2 million
  • The 2016 tournament was worth $278.1 million
  • The 2014 tournament was worth $245.5 million
  • The 2012 tournament was worth $239 million
  • The 2010 tournament was worth $160 million

*Global viewership figures based on Futures Report.

**Most viewed program this year based on OZTAM ratings.