AnnuaI Gem Shows
Adds $76.5 Million to Local Economy
The annual Gem, Mineral and Fossil Showcase generates $76.5 million for the metropolitan Tucson area and almost $6 million in state and local tax revenue, according to a study recently completed by research specialists FMR Associates, Inc. of Tucson for the Metropolitan Tucson Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The study results are based on personal interviews with 19 gem show owners, more than 400 exhibitors, and over 700 buyers and attendees at this year's Gem, Mineral and Fossil Showcase.
The total economic impact of the showcase is based on direct expenditures by the show owner, exhibitor and buyer groups. Expenditures included lodging, food and beverage, entertainment, transportation, shopping, equipment rentals, security, temporary employment and sales promotions.
Nearly all are goods and services provided by Tucsonans and local businesses so the majority of money spent stays in the metropolitan area.
"The Gem, Mineral and Fossil Showcase has been a major event in Tucson for 46 years. In fact, it has become Tucson's largest annual event. People from all over the world travel to Tucson for these shows and their presence here has a very significant impact on our local economy," said Jonathan Walker, president and CEO of the MTCVB.
With thousands of participants and attendees the showcase is the largest of its kind in the world. Twenty-four show locations made up this year's Gem, Mineral & Fossil Showcase. Visitors to the shows find everything from gold and diamonds, to granite bookends and beads. Some shows specialize in lapidary equipment; others feature exhibits from museums and hold children's education programs.
The study found that show owners stay an average of 22 days in Tucson and spend an estimated $4.33 million. Exhibitors stay about 15.6 days and spend $28.69 million. Buyers and attendees during their average 10.8 days in the city spend an estimated $43.48 million.
Taxes collected by the state and the city are sizeable. Total tax collections amount to $5.98 million and include state and city sales taxes, bed tax and car rental tax.
The research also uncovered some information on gem show participants' kavel habits. About 48 percent of the buyers took time off during the shows to sightsee and take tours, 20 percent visited museums, another 11 percent went gambling and ten percent went golfing. Nearly two thirds of out-of-town buyers said they will return to Tucson as visitors.
About 22 percent of all exhibitors planned to stay an average 5.9 extra days in Tucson and 59 percent planned to return to Tucson on vacation. Half of the gem show owners surveyed plan to return to Tucson as visitors.
The MTCVB commissioned the FMR study to update economic impact figures for the annual shows. "We personally interviewed over 1100 gem shows participants. Our findings are plus or minus 3.2 percent with a 95 percent degree of confidence," said Bruce Fohr, president of FMR Associates, Inc., a Tucson-based research company.
The MTCVB is an independent, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the Tucson-area as a convention and visitor destination. It is financially supported by the City of Tucson, Pima County, the Town of Oro Valley and its nearly 1000 individual and business members .
The Gem, Mineral and Fossil Showcase has been a major event in Tucson for 46 years. The impact of these shows has a very significant impact on the local economy. Outlined below is a summary of that impact from research done by FMR Associates, Inc. of Tucson. FMR personally interviewed 19 of the 21 gem show owners, over 400 exhibitors and over 700 buyers and attendees. These findings are plus or minus 3.2 percent with a 95 percent degree of confidence.
24 Gem Show Sites
46,650 Buyers/Exhibitors/Show Owners
11,000 In-town Buyers
35,650 Out-of-town Buyers & Exhibitors
Show owners spend an average of 22 days in Tucson.
Exhibitors spend an average of 15.6 days in Tucson.
Buyers (out of town) spend an average of 10.8 days in Tucson.
Show Owners $ 4,332,000
Spending includes lodging, food/beverage, entertainment, transportation, shopping, equipment rentals, security, temporary employment and promotions.
Direct Tax Collection Estimates
State/local Taxes: Includes
State Sales Tax
City Sales Tax
Car Rental Tax $5,975,425
Information Provided By:
THE METROPOLITAN TUCSON CONVENTION & VISITORS BUREU
130 S. Scott Ave., Tucson, AZ 85701
1-800-638-8350 FAX: 520-884-7804