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SXSW’s Impact on Austin’s Economy

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South by Southwest, Austin’s massive film, music and interactive festival is known not only for bringing major talent to the Lone Star state, but also for its great impact on the city’s economy.

The 2013 Economic Impact Report states that last year the 10-day festival brought in $218.2 million to the economy. With thousands upon thousands of visitors and residents buying local, the short-term impact on area businesses is significant. Long term effects on the economy result in new retail businesses, real estate purchases, and improvements to infrastucture.

As the fesitval grows, the city faces new challanges and must be proactive in making improvements to this city-wide event.  An estimated 155,000 people attended at least one event in 2013. According to, the Interactive portion of the festival grew quite heavily, with a 7% increase in attendance since 2013.  SXSW will release it’s official report on the impact of the 2014 event this fall.

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