Regardless of the outcome of the Mayweather-McGregor boxing match, everyone could foresee one clear, guaranteed result – egregious exchanges in fortune – but how does the fight affect restaurants? The focus of the fight was made clear from the beginning with McGregor’s famous response to Conan O’Brien’s question of whether he’d consider fighting the boxing legend, “if you’re asking would I like to fight Floyd Mayweather – I mean, who would not like to dance around the ring for $180 million?”. This exchange begins with Showtime’s pay per view price tag of $100 which is estimated to have reached 4.9 million PPVs. The high viewing fees continue for the 20,000 fans who attended the event live at Las Vegas’s T-Mobile arena with ticket prices of $10,000 and ring side tickets going for six-figure price tags. Not only was each boxer forecasted to make millions off the fight, but the event as a whole was estimated to bring in up to $700 million.
At Avero, we wanted to understand how all this money flying around affected restaurant sales both in Las Vegas as well as across the country. Comparing restaurant sales from our 10,000 plus customer base shows that the fight had clear gains for businesses in Las Vegas but hurt businesses throughout the rest of the country. Looking at the average variance in year over year same store sales for the five Saturdays before match day compared to the variance on fight day clearly reveals a winner in restaurant sales.
While the last 5 Saturdays leading up to the fight showed better business nationally than in Las Vegas, Las Vegas businesses, including restaurants, bars, nightlife, and casinos, saw a 28.27% increase in sales on fight day compared to the same day last year. At the same time, restaurants throughout the country saw a loss of 4.51%. Outside of Las Vegas, viewers seemed to have stayed home to watch the fight rather than going out and spending on food and beverage. In Las Vegas, however, bettors and spectators took to the local restaurants to spend their money. In comparison, the last five Saturdays show higher increased sales across the country than in Las Vegas. The Mayweather-McGregor fight clearly disrupted the national sales trends for restaurants this summer by greatly boosting food and beverage sales in Las Vegas, as well as bringing in millions for each of their wallets.