Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl’s College Football Playoff Semifinal Delivered Record Economic Impact for Atlanta

Peach Bowl, Inc. events in 2016 provided $91.2 million boost to local economy.

Organization’s cumulative impact reaches more than $933 million with $51 million in tax revenue.


ATLANTA (May 24, 2017) -The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl’s first College Football Playoff Semifinal delivered a record boost to the local economy – generating more than $61.96 million in economic impact officials announced today.

The game between number-one ranked Alabama and fourth-ranked Washington also provided $4.7 million in direct state and local tax revenue collected within metro Atlanta.

When added to the $29.27 million delivered by the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game (Georgia vs. North Carolina) to open last season, the two college football games hosted by Peach Bowl, Inc. in 2016 combined to drive a total economic impact of $91.2 million including $7.4 million in direct tax revenue.

In total, the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game and the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl combined to draw 151,401 fans to Atlanta. In terms of visitors to the city, the two games represent the third and fourth-largest convention events for Atlanta in 2016. More than 23.3 million additional fans watched the games on television.

“Obviously, our goal was to maximize the impact of the Semifinal to take full advantage of the opportunity to benefit our home community,” said Percy Vaughn, Peach Bowl, Inc. chairman. “This is the ultimate example of how powerful major college football games can be to the economic health of our city. These games are some of the largest ‘conventions’ we have on an annual basis.”

Although annual results vary based on the identity and location of the participating teams, results of the Bowl’s annual economic impact study show that college football is a significant economic engine for Atlanta and Georgia.

“There is no doubt college football is a powerful and dependable economic engine in Atlanta,” said Gary Stokan, Peach Bowl, Inc. CEO and president. “We take a lot of pride in providing this financial infusion each year, through our economic impact and charitable giving, to support the community we’ve called home since 1968.”

The sustainable nature of these games and their value to Atlanta is realized in the cumulative numbers that have been tracked since 1999. Over that time, college football games hosted by Peach Bowl, Inc. have delivered $933.4 million in total economic impact and $51.3 million in combined direct state and local tax revenue generated within the metro area.

The economic impact study was conducted by Dr. Bruce A. Seaman, associate professor of economics at Georgia State University. It also revealed additional information about how long visitors stayed and how much money they spent while they were here.

“Higher profile events, like the Semifinal, have proven to attract more visitors, more media and notably more corporate hospitality spending that lead to an overall more economically beneficial event for the host city,” Dr. Seaman said. “In our model, we continue to fine tune the way we treat the data to account for the specific teams involved, the travelling origins of their fan bases, their discretionary spending habits and average length of stay, among many other factors.”

The following chart shows the average amount spent per person (including taxes) by the non-Georgia based fans who stayed in hotels, out of the 75,996 fans who attended the 2016 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl.

2016 Average Spending

Expenditure per person Average Spend (Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl) Average Spend (Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game)
Hotel per day (adjusted for room occupancy) $81.50 $83.66
Food & Beverage per day $66.17 $63.27
Transportation per day $26.99 $26.98
Stadium (excluding ticket) $80.02 $77.38
Shopping total stay $77.25 $70.57
Average length of stay 2.6 nights 2.1 nights

2016 and Cumulative Impact by the Numbers: Metro Atlanta

Event Eco. Impact (2016)
Eco. Impact (Cumulative)
Tax Revenue (2016) Tax Revenue (Cumulative)
Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl $61.9 million $598.4 million $4.7 million $30.8 million
Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game $29.3 million $335 million $2.7 million $20.5 million
TOTAL $91.2 million $933.4 million $7.4 million $51.3 million

Adjustments were made to account for displaced spending that would have occurred without the games, for the proportion of visitor spending actually captured by regional vendors and for motivations for visiting the region not directly associated with the games.

The national significance of the College Football Playoff Semifinal also helped the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl set an all-time attendance record for the Georgia Dome (75,996), television viewership (19.3 million viewers) and charitable giving ($1.7 million). Those numbers represent a 7 percent increase in attendance over last year, a 348 percent increase in television viewership and a 27 percent increase in charitable giving.

This season’s Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl will be played Jan. 1, 2018 at 12:30 p.m. in the new Mercedes-Benz stadium. The game will match two of the nation’s top-ranked teams from around the country as assigned by the College Football Playoff Selection Committee.

Over Labor Day weekend, Peach Bowl, Inc. will host a pair of Chick-fil-A Kickoff Games. Alabama will face Florida State on Saturday, Sept. 2 in what could be the highest-ranked pair of teams to ever meet in the opening weekend of the season. Tennessee will play Georgia Tech in prime time on Monday night, Sept. 4.


About the economic impact study:
Economic Impact is the incremental net change in gross product resulting from the net new spending injected and captured within the metro area, and also incorporates an output spending multiplier of 1.85. A downward adjustment is made for the team payouts paid by Peach Bowl, Inc. to the universities and to the College Football Playoff, as well as for the expenses paid by the teams to local hotels and vendors during their stay in Atlanta. Tax revenues reported include those from local option sales, state sales taxes collected locally, hotel-motel taxes and transportation taxes (including non-federal airport fees) within the metro area.

In an effort to continually improve the economic impact model used and ensure its accuracy, Peach Bowl, Inc. and Dr. Seaman made modifications to the formula in 2016. Slight changes were made to the metro output multiplier used to reflect the latest data reported by IMPLAN (Impact analysis for Planning, reporting I-RIMS multipliers) that help capture the full indirect and induced effects. Additional downward adjustments in economic impact were made to account for the reality that not all visitors from outside Georgia (or outside Metro Atlanta but within Georgia) who spent money in the city were doing so solely because of the games in contrast to combining or rescheduling an already planned trip to the region. Ongoing adjustments for visitor vs. non-visitor spending and less than 100% local capture rates for visitor spending (beyond team payouts) were also applied.

The Economic Impact Model was originally developed in partnership with the Atlanta Sports Council, Atlanta-based McKinsey & Company and Dr. Bruce A. Seaman, Georgia State University economics professor and past president of the Association for Cultural Economics, International. The model provides a defensibly accurate approximation of the direct, indirect and induced economic impacts generated by major sporting events, being sensitive to the many legitimate criticisms that can be made of such studies. Because it incorporates data derived from a carefully administered survey of those attending the games (with sample sizes typically ranging from 600 to 800), the reported impacts are not solely “ex ante” estimates, but incorporate information as obtained from people actually attending the events.
About Peach Bowl, Inc.:
Peach Bowl, Inc. operates the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, the ninth-oldest bowl game in the country and one of New Year’s Six Bowls selected to host the College Football Playoff. In 2014-15, the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl hosted top nationally ranked teams as assigned by the College Football Playoff Selection Committee. In 2016, the Bowl hosted its first College Football Playoff Semifinal (#1 Alabama vs. #4 Washington). The Bowl has earned a reputation as one of the most competitive bowls in the country, with 51 percent of its games being decided by a touchdown or less. Peach Bowl, Inc. has disbursed $160 million in team payouts over its 49-year history and has increased team payout every year since 1996. The Bowl also leads all other bowl game organizations in charitable and scholarship contributions, giving more than $21 million to organizations in need since 2002. Peach Bowl, Inc. also runs the Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game, the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Challenge charity golf tournament and manages The Dodd Trophy national coach of the year award. For more information, visit or follow us on Twitter at @CFAPeachBowl and find us on Facebook at

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