Scotland Welcomes the World - One Year To Go
Yesterday, with 285 days to go before the start of the new year, Stephen Jardine welcomed over 500 business men and women to Celtic Park Football Stadium for the Scottish Enterprise 'Scotland Welcomes the World 2014' event.
It was a morning of information for businesses on how to potentially engage with 3 major Scottish events happening during 2014:
- The 20th Commonwealth Games to be held in Glasgow - 23rd July to 3rd August;
- The 40th Ryder Cup to be held in Gleneagles - 26th to 28th September; and
- Homecoming Scotland a programme of around 400 events and festivals celebrating Scotland and Scottish culture and heritage - taking place thoughout 2014
Business opportunities from major events in Scotland during 2014
Key speakers gave a vast array of information and outlined the tendering processes, highlighted some of the areas that they were currently requiring expertise, and reinforced the mechanisms and reasons for engaging with one or all of these events and contributing to the Scottish economic, physical and social legacy at the heart of these activities.
Two of the key mechanisms to ensure a transparent tendering process are:
- Glasgow Business Portal (currently 1,000 contracts up for grabs), and the
- Public Procurements Scotland Portal
Businesses interested in winning contracts and becoming suppliers need to register online and follow the online tendering process. David Brown (Head of Procurement, Glasgow 2014 Ltd) noted that £12 million of business opportunities are/will be available linked to the Glasgow Commonwealth Games 2014.
And as a point of interest, this is the first time that a private-public suppliers portal has been used for the Ryder Cup.
In addition, David Coyne (Head of Economic Development, Glasgow City Council) highlighted the Jobs Fund, Graduate Jobs Fund, Commonwealth Apprentice Initiative (£5 mill Young Persons Fund) setup by GCC to support young people back into work.
And Robert Kennedy (Director, Holmes Miller) gave a great perspective of what it's like to be involved with a major Games event - based on his London 2012 work - and the opportunities and benefits at home and abroad that just being involved can bring.
To paraphrase his advice to companies:
- Find a niche and focus on what you're good at and what you can deliver well - even the 'breadcrumbs' from the bigger companies are very worthwhile when dealing with these types of events
- With experience like this under your organisation's belt it not only gives you new contacts, but opens doors and allows marketing opportunities (after the games!) that might not have otherwise been possible
- Events like these are held the world over, experience gives you the opportunity to tender abroad
- Remember that work is often cyclical, so renevations, refurbs and certain goods/products have a lifespan - especially in the buildings industry - so work can continue and/or re-occur for years
The following sections give stats and details provided throughout the event.
Glasgow Commonwealth Games 2014 business info - 489 days to go
David Brown, (Head of Procurement, Glasgow 2014 Ltd) highlighted the following:
- 6,000 jobs and £1bn of infrastructure projects have been created linked to the Glasgow Commonwealth Games 2014. (Stephen Jardine, Broadcaster)
- Currently 75% (£250 mil) of contracts have been won by Scottish-based companies, with a further £60-£70 mill worth of contracts to come. (Shona Robison, MSP and Minister for Commonwealth Games & Sport)
- The Commonwealth covers 71 nations and territories - just under 1/3 mill people: 50% of whom are under 25 years old and the GDP of the Commonwealth is due to increase by 3 times more than the Eurozone.
- 21 venues have supported 75,000 visitors so far - including the Emirates Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome, The Hydro, new Hockey facilities, and Hampden redevelopment
- 22 medal events in over 17 sports - including para-sports - will be displayed one medal table recognising the achievements of 6,500 athletes and officials
- In addition, there will be supporting activities such as the Queen's Baton Relay and a Cultural Extravaganza
- Afterwards, part of the legacy is that 700 new homes built to the highest environmental standards (once the Athletes Village) will be for sale and made available for affordable social housing to East-End residents
- With 15,000 volunteers this is "the largest ever peacetime recruitment for a common cause." - Billy Connolly is right to say that "Glasgow is a great city of partakers."
40th Ryder Cup in Gleneagles 2014 - 554 days to goShown in 180 countries around the world and watched in half-a-billion homes (Stephen Jardine, broadcaster), Edward Kitson (Match Director, Ryder Cup Europe) in addition to outlining the tendering processes and giving commitment to fully incorporating a Scottish element into everything Gleneagles 2014, and addressing Environmental issues, shared the following estimated stats about the Ryder Cup 2014:
- It will be worth around £100 mill to the Scottish economy
- 1/4 mill people will attend, with around 45,000 spectators per day - seated in a 2,000 capacity ampitheatre on Tee 1 alone, and 15,000 seats around the course in total
- 3 park-n-ride sites, and 150 double-decker and 200 single-decker buses will help transport spectators
- It will be watched by 1-in-5 people in the UK, and 1-in-25 people in USA
- There has been the largest ever number of Ryder Cup volunteer applications - 1,800 volunteers
- 1,000 journalists photographers and technical staff will be in situ, catered for in a 20,000 m2 TV 'compound'
- 90km fibre-optic cabling and 25km audio cabling will support the 16+ big screens and 80+ cameras situated around the course
- 35,000 m2 of tentage will be erected, hosting hospitality, media, merchandise, public facilities, and various public games and activities areas around the course - the power for which will be supplied by around 50 generators
No small feat!
Scotland Homecoming 2014 - 285 days to go
Five years on from the very first event, this year has a £5.5 mill budget aiming to generate a £44 mill return (Shona Robison, MSP and Minister for Commonwealth Games & Sport).
Paul Bush OBE (COO, EventScotland) then spoke more generally about the second Year of Homecoming Scotland, highlighting that the £3 mill events fund would be used to celebrate - with hopefully 50 million 'diaspora' - both the ancient and more modern aspects of Scotland, and that across the country we need to "raise the bar" of tourism to provide the best service possible.
He was convinced that we could use the knowledge and experience from the Commonwealth and Ryder Cup to create a "bespoke industry" that could better Australia in terms of capitalising on major sporting expertise and economies.
Again, the focus was on creating a legacy of sustainable growth for which 2014 represents the start. This does not finish in 2014, but can continue at home in 2015 (e.g. gymnastics, dressing) and hopefully again in the Youth Olympic Games in 2018.
It is not just about sporting events, it's about generating and applying a pool of skills, knowledge and expertise that can help grow local and national economies, and be exported to countries worldwide.
Showcasing Clyde Gateway
One of the other areas highlighted during the event was the Clyde Gateway regeneration programme. Ian Manson (Chief Executive, Clyde Gateway) outlined the "major transformational change" of this part of the East End of Glasgow and the developments and legacy to continue for the next 20 years.
£250 mill has been invested in Clyde Gateway this year alone (not including Emirates Arena and Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome...) and £26 mill has been invested in construction projects. Overall £1.5bn has been invested from private sector to date.
This investment benefits the community as a whole, with jobs, facilities and a new perspective and sense of pride given back to the area and its' residents.
As part of this, housing, sports facilities, local facilities and libraries, transport links, and affordable high-spec office space 5 mins by train from the City Centre have been built, redeveloped and improved: all with the aim of "supporting local people creating jobs".
As part of this showcase, a tour of the Clyde Gateway sites was provided. Unfortunately the bus broke down towards the end of the tour, but by that point I had seen the Olympic Village, regeneration works in Dalmarnock and Bridgeton - including the umbrella bandstand and the Olympia - and the outside of the Velodrome.
Very impressive, and clear that a lot of young people and the community were engaged with the facilities and work already; and not just 'lumbered' with the changes.
Business, move and financial support packages are on offer from Clyde Gateway to held organisations take advantage of the new facilities and ease the influx of businesses into the area.
A Year of Event Opportunities for Scottish Businesses
In summary, as the tagline for the event said, it really is 'A Year of event opportunities for Scottish Businesses' - and we need to prepare, engage and capitalise on the expertise the length and breadth of the country.
Robert Kennedy summed it up for businesses, when he said that the Commonwealth Games 2014 [and the other events during that year]: "will reverberate; so be prepared"...
...Be prepared to showcase to the world what we can do as a nation, capitalise on these opportunities, and to grow our expertise in these areas to support business activity in Scotland, Europe and beyond.