Growth of the sports industry in Qatar and the GCC to be faster than elsewhere


It is expected that the sports industry in Qatar and the GCC will grow faster than elsewhere. A recent survey conducted by PwC painted a picture of the industry in Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Bahrain.

The sports industry in the Middle East is expected to grow by 8.7% over the next three to five years while the global sports industry is expected to grow by 3% in the same time. The growth is related to the strong support by the governments in the region in a bid to diversify economies and can be attributed to the maturity of the countries.

The sports industry in the Middle East is expected to fully recover from the impact of the pandemic by 2022 with Qatar alone due to host 63 international sporting events in 2021.

There are many world-class events in the region including the 2022 FIFA World Cup and the 2030 Asian Games in Qatar. Bahrain and Abu Dhabi are the hosts of annual Formula One Grand Prix while Saudi Arabia has hosted high profile events including heavyweight boxing and professional golf more recently.

The very popular e-sports industry is a natural fit for the Middle East with a young, internet confident population. It complements or supplements the more traditional sports. The climate in the summer is too hot for (outdoor) sports while e-sports are video games played competitively.

The popularity of e-sports has significantly increased in the pandemic, where most people had to spend extended periods of time indoors, and the industry has capitalised on this interest of the mainstream.

The lockdowns have required the sports industry to find other revenue streams as income from ticket sales declined. It has motivated organizations, institutions and entities to prioritise innovation and a digital agenda to attract more diversified audiences and to apply new methods of participation.

Please click on the link and reach out to learn more about opportunities and possibilities in the sports and e-sports industries in the State of Qatar as well as Business Start Up Qatar.

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