Tim Dower: America's Cup a spectacular financial failure

Author
Tim Dower,
Publish Date
Wed, 21 Jul 2021, 9:59AM
(Photo / Getty Images)
(Photo / Getty Images)

Tim Dower: America's Cup a spectacular financial failure

Author
Tim Dower,
Publish Date
Wed, 21 Jul 2021, 9:59AM

The America's Cup post-mortem report has revealed a lot of juicy gossipy stuff about what went on during the event.

And to me it raises questions about who was calling the shots, and who ought to have been calling them, given that it was the sorry old taxpayer that funded the whole thing.

But the headline take-out from it all is of course, the spectacular financial failure.

All up NZ Inc is almost $300 million worse off as a result of it.

Auckland Council has also quietly admitted it put in 92 million more than it had previously said. That's a scandal in its own right.

You can partly blame it on the pandemic, and a lack of challengers, plus the lack of international visitors. But when you get below the lid, there's a string of dysfunctional stuff-ups and of course the usual pettiness and one-up-manship we've all come to associate with this event.

Bottom line: we put far too much public money in, so Auckland alone has a deficit of $146 million dollars.

On the upside, lots of people in lockdowns in other part of the world saw it.

The question now is: do we go through all of this again to try and recoup some of the investment in facilities by hosting the next Cup?  Or do we let Team New Zealand take the show on the road, and find a higher bidder?

I'll admit I'm in two minds.

On the one hand, I've had a gutsful of the arrogant expectation that New Zealanders will fund this rich boys' game indefinitely, whatever the cost.

So part of me says good luck, if you can find another sucker city to pay for your party take it there.

But another part of me says: hey, you lot owe it to New Zealand, and to Auckland, to help pay for what we built for you.

And by the way, there's a fee for using our brand.