Sport is uniquely powerful. Nothing captivates world attention, unites nations and transcends language and cultural barriers in the same way as the world’s largest sporting events. At certain times the Olympics or a World Cup Rugby of Football has become a universal point of contact for everyone. Their incredible reach and influence make such events not only the sporting pinnacle for competitors, but also provide businesses with a global marketing showcase and governments with powerful political opportunities. Deloitte & Touche, Travel Tourism and Leisure Report, Issue 2, June 2003 The Olympic Games has the most kudos of all. Your task is to consider the pros and cons of the London Olympic Bid for 2012. Estimates put the costs of bid making at £13m and if won, the cost of staging it at around £2.4bn of public money. You’ll find much information on the government website and much analysis on the various media sites. Deloitte and Touché considered the outcomes of the previous three Olympic Games where results were available to them: 1992 Barcelona, 1996 Atlanta and 2000 Sydney; in summary, they found: ■ Barcelona. This made a loss of $1.4bn but Barcelona and Spain have gained much lasting benefit from the boost given to tourism and a range of infrastructure benefits and seafront development. ■ Atlanta. Here the games were deemed entirely commercial, arguably drifting away from the Olympic spirit; they were highly profitable, requiring no government funding – often referred to as the Coca-Cola Olympics. ■ Sydney. The Australian authorities spent $3.8bn and earned $3.0bn in direct revenue. However, Australia has seen a 10% growth in tourism, which is continuing to raise post games as many of the negatives of ‘long-haul’ travel are dispelled. The cultural impact in terms of global marketing and self image significantly outweighed the financial investment, in the view of the Deloitte and Touches. So, you should consider aspects other than direct revenue and cost streams in your analysis.