The five-week FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar is delivering record-high revenues.
The 2022 FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar will generate roughly US$6.5 billion in revenue, topping the previous record of US$5.4 billion from the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Thanks to the once-in-four-year tournament, Qatar’s GDP is estimated to grow by 4.1% in 2022, and the tournament alone could add up to US$20 billion to Qatar’s economy. Experts also believe that Qatar’s GDP will rise at an annual rate of 3.2% between 2022 and 2030.
With revenues expected to outperform all previous records, many business sectors are reaping huge profits from the ongoing FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar. From tourism to hospitality and beyond, here’s a look at how the four main business sectors are cashing in on the football fever.
Tourism and infrastructure
The tourism and infrastructure industry is no doubt a big winner during the World Cup, with Qatar contributing the most in travel and tourism to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region’s GDP. With the FIFA World Cup taking place in Qatar, the tourism sector can expect to bring in up to US$4 billion in earnings to the GCC region, of which Qatar will corner the major share.
As Qatar’s tourism sector has been steadily bouncing back from Covid’s impact, the country is looking to make it 12% of its GDP by 2030. To accommodate the influx of tourists, Qatar has invested around US$220 billion in its infrastructure since 2010 when Qatar was named as host of the 2022 World Cup. In addition to building state-of-the-art stadiums to host the World Cup matches, Qatar has built a modern metro system, new hotels, resorts and districts within the capital city, Doha, as well as increasing its airport capacity.
There is no doubt that the hotel business is one of the main beneficiaries of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. With an estimated 1.5 million tourists expected to descend on Qatar for the tournament, there is a huge demand for accommodation and dining options. Over 150 new hotels have been built for the FIFA World Cup to meet this demand, and the hotel business will continue to grow even after the World Cup this year.
As per global real estate consultant Knight Frank’s report, by 2025, the hotel industry in Qatar could see 89% growth to over 56,000 hotel rooms, which will cost over US$7 billion. “While there is palpable excitement in Doha as the FIFA World Cup draws near, for the country’s hospitality sector, the best is yet to come,” said the Head of Knight Frank, Faisal Durrani.
Hotels in Qatar are already preparing for the influx of guests following this year’s World Cup, with many hotels increasing their capacity or opening new properties. These new hotels will continue to serve as an additional source of revenue for the economy in the years to come.
Retail and e-commerce
Among all the GCC countries, Qatar is expected to have the highest growth in retail sales with a 36% year-on-year increase, reaching US$18.5 billion in 2022. With millions of visitors coming to the country for the World Cup, there will be a significant boost in the revenues of the country’s retail industry.
To accommodate the growing demand, there will be a need for more retail space, including everything from grocery stores and convenience stores to souvenir shops selling World Cup merchandise. Retailers will see a significant increase in sales during the tournament.
Media and telecommunications
More than three billion football fans across the world will be glued to their television screens during the FIFA World Cup in Qatar. This provides a golden opportunity for businesses in the media and entertainment industry to capitalize on the football heat. Apart from TV networks paying top dollar for broadcast rights, sponsors were also predicted to pour a record-high amount of money—up to US$1.72 billion—into advertising during the event to vie for attention from viewers. The number might spike even higher in reality. As the tournament kick-started, data has shown that Chinese companies are the biggest sponsors—US$1.4 billion—in the World Cup 2022, with Wanda Group, Hisense Group, Vivi and Mengniu being the four official Chinese sponsors.
As per previous records, television broadcasting rights contributed to about half of FIFA’s earnings, with an additional 26% from marketing rights with sponsors. With the revenue from this year’s World Cup anticipated to set a new record, we can expect the media and entertainment sector will benefit significantly from the tournament.
There is so much potential for growth tied to the 2022 FIFA World Cup that it’s no wonder why businesses are excited. Even though the tournament is going on, it’s best to keep an eye on these four sectors—they’re sure to be big winners after it ends.
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