Caribbean Premier League provides US$105m boost to region

Last Updated on Saturday, 26 December 2015, 20:59 by GxMedia

Professor Densil Williams

Kingston, Jamaica: Research carried out by Mona School of Business and Management (MSBM), University of the West Indies, has found that the 2013 Caribbean Premier League (CPLT20) tournament generated a combined impact of US$105.6m across the region.

CPL launched last year to sell-out crowds, with over 250,000 spectators attending matches across Antigua, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and St Lucia. Global stars including Chris Gayle, Kieron Pollard, RickyPonting and Muttiah Muralitharan took part in the tournament, dubbed the Biggest Party in Sport, where franchise team shareholders include Hollywood stars Mark Wahlberg and Gerard Butler.

At a time when Caribbean nations have been keen to boost economic growth, CPL provided a much-needed stimulus. Twenty-six days of carnival-like entertainment, coupled with exciting cricket, generated a significant economic fillip to the host countries given the huge dollar spend over a short period of time.

The report has established that last year’s tournament had wide-reaching benefits in the six host countries (Antigua, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, Trinidad and St Lucia) across eight different sectors: general services, transport and communication, government services, hotels and restaurants, manufacturing, health care and insurance, and financial service sector. The competition is estimated to have boosted GDP by as much as 0.7 percent in some countries, a tremendous boost given the fact that some countries hosted just three days of cricket.

Professor Densil Williams, University of the West Indies, commented:

“With the region still feeling the effects of the global financial crisis, CPL has been a real shot in the arm for the Caribbean. The tournament could trigger an even bigger revival, because as it grows and the brand becomes more recognised, we anticipate that the impact on the economies will be much greater.”

The estimated total economic impact of CPL 2013 for each host country is as follows: Antigua, US$7.35m; Barbados, US $9.1m; Guyana, US$4m; Jamaica, US$10.65m; Trinidad, US$12.85m, St Lucia US$7.3m. An additional US$54m was raised by spending across all six countries.

As well as providing a financial boost to the region, the competition has also helped to put domestic West Indian cricket back on the map, with the tournament televised across the globe, including USA, India, UK, Australia and New Zealand.

Hailed by supporters, players and administrators as an overwhelming success, the Caribbean Premier League is part of a bigger vision to develop the game of cricket in the region. To demonstrate the long-term development strategy, CPL granted sixty retainer contracts to local players, in addition to those that are already in existence at the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB). 

Damien O’Donohoe, CEO of Caribbean Premier League, said:

“These findings back up what people have been telling us for months, that the CPL has been brilliant for the region. This year we’re committed to building on our initial success, with more sold-out crowds, fantastic entertainment and a high standard of cricket.”

 Michael Muirhead, CEO of the West Indies Cricket Board, added:“CPL is central to our vision of developing and reviving cricket in the region. Last year’s tournament not only put a smile back on the face of our domestic game, but this report shows that it also had a huge benefit for the Caribbean in general.”

 Last year’s winning captain of the Jamaica Tallawahs, Chris Gayle, said: “I’ve played a lot of T20 cricket, and every competition claims to be the most fun, but CPL really is the ultimate party. With fans coming out in their hundreds of thousands, it’s great to hear that CPL has had such a positive economic impact on the region.”

The Limacol CPL returns in July and August 2014 where Jamaica Tallawahs will defend their title against the St. Lucia Zouks, Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel, Antigua Hawksbills, Guyana Amazon Warriors and Barbados Tridents.

Caribbean Premier League is a franchise-based T20 format cricket tournament that combines two of the most compelling aspects of Caribbean life – dramatic cricket and a vibrant Carnival atmosphere.  The inaugural CPL, billed as “the Biggest Party in Sport” featured six teams competing throughout the region in August  2013 – Jamaica Tallawahs, Trinidad & Tobago Red Steel, Barbados Tridents, Guyana Amazon Warriors, St. Lucia Zouks, Antigua Hawksbills.  The Jamaica Tallawahs, captained by Chris Gayle, emerged as champions.

CPL II will take place in July and August of 2014.