Japanese partners are not meeting W World Champs Expectations

  0 Jeremy Brahm | October 18th, 2018 | Asian Volleyball, International Volleyball, Japanese League, News

With the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship in Japan reaching its conclusion this weekend in Yokohama. It is time to looking at whether the tournament has been successful for the organizers, which is a partnership between Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) and the Japanese Volleyball Association (JVA).

Through the first two rounds of the tournament in 2010, which Japan hosted, the attendance was 226,629 through 92 matches. However, through the first two rounds of the 2018 version of Japan hosting the tournament, attendance is 154,115 through 92 matches. This is a 32% drop from 2018.

According to an article by the Asahi Shinbun, a leading Japanese daily newspaper on Sunday, October 14th, the partnership between Tokyo Broadcasting System and Japanese Volleyball Association looks to lose money on the hosting of the 2018 version of the tournament. In the article, it said that TBS has spent, between the domestic broadcasting rights and the marketing expenses, more than 20 billion yen (around $17.8 million per Oanda on October 18th). TBS is required to spend money on broadcasting all matches for the world fee as well. TBS can bring in income through television commercials, advertising boards and sales of merchandise with the JVA. The big reason for TBS to not make money on the tournament is that they have not been able to sell as many advertisements as they have before. The article states that the TBS is expected to lose near 10 billion yen ($8.9 million) due to this loss in advertising.

As for the JVA, they are required per tournament regulations to pay for participating teams travel within Japan and also their hotel rooms. Compared to the United States, having rooms with multiple beds may not be possible in some hotels of some of the cities without an extremely high cost. So, they are purchasing a high number of rooms over the period of the tournament. However, with the JVA only able to take in ticket revenue from each of the matches, to cover these expenses, a 32% drop in attendance would lead to losses for the JVA in hosting this tournament. The JVA, in the article stated that it was expected to lose 6 billion yen ($5.34 million).

With the FIVB looking at other large markets in Asia, such as China and Thailand to host the 2022 Women’s World Championships, it may be a while before Japan hosts the World Championships again, even with great domestic television ratings.

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