Comm Games good for the Gold Coast, bad for business

A study into the impact of last year’s Commonwealth Games on Gold Coast businesses has found a vast majority felt let down by the event.

But most still think the Games were a good experience for the city.

The research was undertaken by the Griffith Business School with businesses interviewed 12 months after the Games to measure how they thought the event affected the city.


74 per cent of respondents interviewed described the Games’ impact on their business as negative, with 77 per cent believing they did not have a good return on their investment ahead of the Games.

Almost three-quarters of those surveyed said the Games did not give their business a boost.

Griffith Business School researcher Dr Joan Carlini said there was a significant contrast in views about the impact of the Commonwealth Games.

“Notably, although our businesspeople were, in general, disappointed with the Games as far as their influence on trading, they remained surprisingly positive about the broader benefits being brought to the region,” Dr Carlini said.

A majority of businesses surveyed agreed that the Commonwealth Games has given the Gold Coast a huge boost in its reputation and enhanced the city’s ability to attract other major events.

But the research also found that 69 per cent of businesses felt the decision to hold the Games during Easter was a bad idea.

However, most still rated the overall experience as ‘good to excellent’.

Dr Carlini says business owners felt let down by inaccurate information given to them in the lead up to the Games.

“Ultimately, although owners and operators were evidently able to appreciate the reputational upside to the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games, there appears to be an enduring sense that local businesses were not adequately consulted or considered by organisers in the lead-up to the event,” Dr Carlini said.

“In future, it will be crucial for organisers and government to engage in meaningful conversation with local businesses, and for them take a proactive role in the planning and execution of such events, to ensure they feel seen and heard.”