Erich Schlegel-USA TODAY Sports

Mexico City Game Between the Houston Texans and Oakland Raiders Generated $45 Million Economic Impact

It was a loss for the Houston Texans in Mexico City but the game itself had a major impact on the economy.

A study completed by the Sports Industry group of EY determined that the NFL’s game in Mexico City and related events produced an incremental increase in the city’s Gross Domestic Product of US$45 million (MXN 923 million), supporting 2,840 jobs in the city.   

The Oakland Raiders hosted the Houston Texans at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City on November 21, 2016, before a crowd of 76,473 in the first-ever Monday Night Football game played outside of the United States.

The EY study brings together evidence from a range of sources, including the NFL’s post-event surveys of fans who attended the game and wider economic data on Mexico’s economy.  

The sellout crowd included 9,500 international visitors mainly from the United States and 21,500 visitors who travelled from elsewhere in Mexico.  On average, each international visitor spent more than 5 days in Mexico. Total domestic and international tourist spending was US$43 million (MXN 880 million), of which US$32 million (MXN 659 million) was incremental to the Mexico City economy.  

The feedback from visitors to Mexico was overwhelmingly positive with 72% of international visitors stating that they were now more likely to return to Mexico and 90% stating that they would recommend a visit to family and friends.  

Mark Gregory, Chief Economist, EY UK&I commented “EY’s research demonstrates the value to Mexico City from hosting the NFL game between the Oakland Raiders and the Houston Texans in November last year.  By leveraging the interest and excitement that the league generates, the City gained a significant boost to its economy; with around 31,000 visitors bringing additional income for local businesses, supporting thousands of jobs and generating significant tax receipts for the national government.

Fans travelling to the City also took the opportunity to extend their stay beyond that of game night, visiting a range of attractions in the City and more broadly across the country; this has left a strong legacy, enabling the hosts to showcase what it has to offer and encouraging future growth in Mexico’s vital tourism economy.”

Live broadcast of the game in the United States on ESPN and ESPN Deportes reached 33 million people with an average audience of 12 million.  Additionally, from the announcement of the game in February through game day, there were nearly 20,000 mentions of the game on digital, social and traditional media in the United States with an estimated PR value of nearly US$250 million according to Repucom and Prime Research.  

Fan engagement around the game was also strong, with 205,000 fans attending the NFL Fan Fest in Chapultepec Park and more than 55,000 people taking part in other community focused events in the city during the week of the game.  

The NFL will return to Mexico City in 2017 when the Oakland Raiders host the New England Patriots at Estadio Azteca.  The date and time of the game will be determined in conjunction with the release of the NFL schedule this spring. 


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