Issue No. 11 - June/July 2003
It's More than a Game
Yes, it’s the catch-cry of Channel Nine’s high rating Footy Show, and it definitely holds true when it comes to Australian Rules Football.
Take a game unique to Australia, throw in a healthy mix of passionate (sometimes fanatical) support and tribal loyalty, provide opportunities for business involvement and client entertainment, or just set aside space and facilities for the fan on the mound. Market it, promote it and develop media support and you have one of the key growth industries of the past 10 years.
Australian Rules Football in South Australia contributes around $320 million to the local economy and provides staffing wages in the vicinity of $30 million. The South Australian National Football League ( SANFL ) through its nine clubs and two licensed AFL clubs employs more than 1400 staff directly and provides the impetus for employment for well in excess of this number through ancillary businesses peripheral to the game.
Products ranging from drink to food to clothing to toys to household items are marketed on the popularity of Australian Rules. The game, the participants and the businesses associated closely with it have profile—hence the dollars.
Sounds wonderful doesn’t it? But what about the future?
The game is now played in two distinctly different ways and on two different levels.
The AFL showcases incredible athletes, boasts well-earned and rewarded corporate partnerships and provides theatre on a grand scale. At t...