Visit Anaheim, the official destination organization for Anaheim, is positioning its local community and tourism industry for a strong rebound from the COVID-19 pandemic by partnering with the City of Anaheim as part of the Community and Economic Recovery Plan adopted by Mayor Harry Sidhu and the City Council on March 26, 2020.
Since that recovery plan was put in place, Visit Anaheim successfully rescheduled two shows while also securing eight future bookings for the Anaheim Convention Center. Combined, these 10 shows represent more than $475 million in local economic impact and will generate an estimated $9.2 million in tourism occupancy tax (TOT) revenue for the city. Most importantly, with 50,000 local jobs lost during the “stay at home” orders, this business will make it possible for local hotels, restaurants, and other tourism businesses to start rehiring their workforce. With an additional 30 conventions still scheduled to meet in Anaheim this year, Visit Anaheim is currently working to retain those events which will result in an additional $4.7 million in TOT to the city, for a combined total of $13 million in TOT revenue for the City that might otherwise be lost if Visit Anaheim was not still working on behalf of Anaheim.
“Our team continues to deliver results that will benefit the destination and local residents with future business,” said Jay Burress, president & CEO, Visit Anaheim. “With 50 to 60 new business leads per month, our team is working hard to get business on the books because we know tourism means an increase in quality jobs, revenue for small businesses and is an essential component of a strong local economy.”
Hosting an average of nearly one million attendees a year, the Anaheim Convention Center is a vital city asset, responsible for generating year-round tourism. The strength of our local economy, is dependent on rehiring more than 50,000 jobs lost during the COVID-19 pandemic, saving small businesses decimated by closures, and restoring tax revenue for vital city services by getting the hospitality industry get back on its feet.
Notably, these successes were achieved as Visit Anaheim experienced a nearly 60% reduction in staff in March, with the remaining economic recovery team taking 25% and 50% pay cuts among employees and senior leadership. This city tax revenue generation nearly doubles the economic assistance provided by the City of Anaheim under the Council-adopted Anaheim Community and Economic Recovery Plan, which allowed Visit Anaheim to maintain this core economic recovery staff team to drive these results for residents and taxpayers.
With Visit Anaheim strategically focused on rebooking business for the convention center, the two rescheduled shows including, Diversified Communications and International Society for Technology in Education, will take place in 2020. Some of the new bookings for future years in Anaheim include NAMM, The Foursquare Church, Future Business Leaders of America, IPC – Association Connecting Electronics Industries, and Produce Marketing.
To learn more about Visit Anaheim’s efforts to ensure the city recovers quickly and is best positioned to restore hotel stays, meetings, and conventions in Anaheim go to visitanaheim.org/response-and-recovery.