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CareerBuilder.co.uk, and EMSI (Economic Modeling Specialists International), recently ran a scenario to quantify the importance of the sports industry to the UK economy. The results found the initial effect of removing the sports industry would be a loss of £23.8 billion in earnings and 987,564 in jobs.
The scenario removed the sports industry from the current economy and measured the projected effects. These numbers were reached by removing the three industries that capture most of the jobs in sports; operation of sports facilities, activities of sports clubs and other sports related activities.
The expansive scenario also found that removal of the sports industry would lead to ripple effects in other high-level industries. Wholesale and retail trade would be the hardest hit, with 105,267 jobs lost, followed by the administrative and support service industry, which would lose 81,758 jobs, and human health and social work, with a loss of 70,466 jobs.
The profession hit hardest by the loss of the sports industry would be groundsmen, a job title covering 97,979 individuals. While not all groundsmen work in conjunction with sports activities, 28% work in activities of sports clubs and other, and 18% work in operation of sports facilities. 45% work in landscape service activities, which often service sports facilities. In total, 91% of groundsmen, 89,161 individuals, work in some kind of sports-related activity.
Sports and leisure assistants come next with 54,737 jobs in Great Britain, followed closely by sports coaches, instructors and officials (50,508), leisure and sports managers (46,862), fitness instructors (35,758), sports players (20,769), and sports and fitness occupations not elsewhere classified (9,835).
With its high concentration of football clubs, the South East region would be hit the hardest in the absence of the sports industry, losing 51,952 jobs. London is next, losing 37,341, followed by Scotland (31,922) and the West Midlands (30,410). The North East would be least impacted, losing only 13,300 jobs.