San Diego Hopes to Improve Chances of Keeping Comic-Con by Offering $500,000 in Hotel Tax Revenue

     April 28, 2010

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San Diego is fighting to keep Comic-Con in the city after the convention’s contract with the San Diego Convention Center expires after 2012.  Earlier this month, San Diego approved an extension of the convention center to better accomodate the 126,000+ attendees.  Variety now reports that the city is sweetening the deal by offering organizers $500,000 in hotel tax revenue.  The offer would cover 2011 and 2012 as well as 2013-2015 should the organizers agree to a contract extension.

Los Angeles and Anaheim are also bidding to get the convention and the massive revenue it generates for a city.  A decision is expected in the next few weeks.  It would be nice if that $500,000 in hotel tax revenue would somehow persuade organizers to create a hotel pre-registration system that isn’t terrible.  For more details regarding potential factors in Comic-Con’s decision, hit the jump.

sdcc.jpgAs we reported a couple weeks ago, an interview with San Diego’s KPBS revealed various factors and details regarding whether or not Comic-Con will remain in the city.  Here are some of the highlights:

- CCI is currently negotiating a three-year extension to their contract with San Diego that will keep the convention there until 2015.

– The recent land deal didn’t impact their decision on the extension, since the new space wouldn’t be available until at least 2015, but it may impact the group’s decision to stay there longer. However, if the deal didn’t go through, it might have made a difference.

– One of the options to deal with the growing attendance is to expand more events outside of the convention center to other nearby hotels and the like.

– Last year, Comic Con San Diego had 126,000 attendees, and this year most passes are already sold out. There is a waitlist of 400 exhibitors.

– Growing attendance and more locations costs money, so they are looking to increase sponsorship to help offset costs.

– The availability of volunteers factors into the decision. Comic-Con 2009 had 3,000 volunteers, and it may be hard to replicate elsewhere, since the fanbase in San Diego is so dedicated.

– The actual influence of Hollywood on Comic-Con is overblown. The presence of films and TV is the same as it’s been before, it just gets more attention from mainstream media, and they have more money to promote their presence.

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