Residents are the big spenders

Shane Scanlan

SGS Economics & Planning research shows that residents each spend $10,000 on retail and hospitality each year within the city.

Workers spend $2500 each year on retail and hospitality, while students spend just $1800.

The research was commissioned by the City of Melbourne as part of its recently-released Retail and Hospitality Strategy First Year Report.

The research shows that, as a group, workers spend the most in the city on retail and hospitality – $1.09 billion annually. But there are about 500,000 workers and only 105,000 residents.

Despite their numerical disadvantage, residents spend only slightly less than workers – estimated by SGS at $1.04 billion.

Students were estimated to spend $459 million as a group on retail and hospitality within the city each year. The Retail and Hospitality Expenditure Study, City of Melbourne/SGS Economics & Planning 2014 research also showed that visitors to Melbourne spend an estimated $885 million.

The researchers also looked at “leakage” and found that, again, residents were the most loyal group of retail and hospitality customers within the city.

Residents expend 85 per cent of their total spend within the city, and forked out only $150 million (15 per cent of their total spend) on retail and hospitality in other places.

In contrast, students aand workers were found to spend four times as much as they spent in the city in other places.

Workers annually spend $4.2 billion elsewhere, while students spend $1.6 billion in places other than the City of Melbourne.

The report's researchers pointed out that there was considerable overlap between these groups.

The City of Melbourne's marketing chair, Cr Beverley Pinder-Mortimer, said: "There is tremendous need for the city to continue to market to its residents given that this group has been identified as the strongest supporter of local business."

City Precinct president Gerard Kelly said: "The City Precinct Committee, supports the findings that residents would be for some businesses their key market and most loyal customers."

Cr Pinder-Mortimer said: "Our residents make a significant contribution to the day and night time economy of our City and as such we continue to market the city and all it has to offer to them."

The Year One Report showed Melbourne’s CBD was home to 18,221 businesses and had a weekday population of 844,000 people and a weekend population of 579,000 people.

The report estimated that 439,000 people were employed in CBD retail and hospitality businesses.

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