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2017 Austin Marathon Contributes $34.4 Million to Austin Economy

Findings stem from enhanced community collaboration with St. Edward’s University experts

High Five Events is proud to announce that the Austin Marathon® presented by NXP pumped $34.4 million into the Austin economy during race weekend. The Austin Marathon was able to better calculate its economic impact by utilizing the faculty expertise at St. Edward’s University’s Bill Munday School of Business. This year’s economic impact on the City of Austin is an $8.7 million increase from the 2016 event.

“This year’s economic contributions by the Austin Marathon showcase the growth of Austin’s flagship running event, the staggering financial impact it has on the city of Austin, and the idea that Austin is a destination for runners from around the world,” said Stacy Keese, co-owner of High Five Events.

Dr. Ali Dadpay, associate dean, MBA director, and professor of Economics for The Bill Munday School of Business, conducted the research for the 2017 Austin Marathon economic impact report. Dr. Dadpay achieved the report’s primary goal of incorporating more data, including High Five Events’ localized spending, volunteer contributions and jobs created, to measure the direct, indirect and induced economic impact.

“The Austin Marathon is an example of a sports event which vitalizes the local economy and creates significant revenue for the city and the local business community,” said Dr. Dadpay. “We have used estimated spending and estimated averages to aggregate total spending. The multiplier effect for this event is significant, and we can believe it impacts all economic sectors in our region.”

Moving forward, both parties will work to understand spectator contributions and the value generated by the Austin Marathon in social media, digital marketing, and digital brand recognition. This is an understudied aspect of such events, and other cities are looking into ways to measure the true impact of marathon events. The Austin Marathon is excited about the direction of the St. Edward’s University partnership.

“The Bill Munday School of Business focuses on supporting the Austin community with practical research that facilitates economic growth,” said Dr. Nancy Schreiber, school of business dean. “Our partnership with the Austin business ecosystem is a central force to providing relevant 21 st century business education.”