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Spectator sports, event promoters, artists and related industries, 2015

Released: 2017-03-16

Total operating revenue for spectator sports, event promoters, artists and related industries grew 3.6% to $8.8 billion in 2015, from $8.5 billion in 2014. Total operating expenses were $7.8 billion in 2015.

Promoters (presenters) of performing arts, sports and similar events (38.5%) accounted for the largest share of total operating revenue of these four industry groups in 2015. Spectator sports (36.7%), which increased in part due to the impact of new broadcasting contracts, had the second-largest share, followed by independent artists, writers and performers (20.2%). Agents and managers for artists, athletes, entertainers and other public figures accounted for the remaining 4.6%.

Promoters (presenters) of performing arts, sports and similar events

Total operating revenue for promoters (presenters) of performing arts, sports and similar events was $3.4 billion in 2015, a 6.2% decrease from 2014. Total operating expenses were $3.3 billion, resulting in an operating profit margin of 2.0%. Of these total operating expenses, salaries, wages, commissions and benefits amounted to $743.3 million. Businesses in this industry include live theatres, sports stadiums, performing arts promoters, festivals, sports promoters, and other presenters with and without facilities.

Spectator sports

The spectator sports industry group, composed of sports teams playing for a paying audience, horse race tracks, racing events and independent athletes, had total operating revenue of $3.2 billion in 2015, up 14.0% from the previous year. Total operating expenses grew 12.8% to $3.0 billion, resulting in an operating profit margin of 6.3%. Salaries, wages, commissions and benefits grew 11.7% to $1.4 billion, representing 45.7% of total operating expenses.

The last two years have had significant increases in operating revenue, with 13.1% in 2014 and 14.0% in 2015. These increases were due in part to a rebound from the National Hockey League player lockout and from new broadcasting contracts.

Canadian sports teams and clubs from the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball, The National Basketball Association and Major League Soccer accounted for 63.4% of total operating revenue for the spectator sports industry.

Independent artists, writers and performers

Total operating revenue of independent artists, writers and performers was $1.8 billion in 2015, while total operating expenses were $1.1 billion, resulting in an operating profit margin of 37.6%. Salaries, wages, commissions and benefits amounted to $214.8 million.

Agents and managers for artists, athletes, entertainers and other public figures

In 2015, agents and managers for artists, athletes, entertainers and other public figures, the smallest of the four industry groups, had total operating revenue of $406.5 million and total operating expenses of $334.0 million, resulting in an operating profit margin of 17.8%. Salaries, wages, commissions and benefits were the largest expense item, accounting for 30.5% of total operating expenses.

  Note to readers

Data for 2013 and 2014 have been revised.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).

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