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Independent research commissioned by the tourism body for Leicester and Leicestershire, Leicester Shire Promotions has shown that the company's activities have achieved an estimated social return on investment of £9.83 for each £1 of public sector funding invested.

The project was delivered by Rose Regeneration and was aimed at evaluating the wider value that Leicester Shire Promotions delivers to both local authorities and more widely, their communities, through its activities.

The approach is based around developing a measurement that is complementary to the normal metrics around place marketing and tourism development, and that looks at the social value delivered to the city and county by the activities of Leicester Shire Promotions. This was achieved by using a technique known as 'Social Return on Investment' (SROI).

By dividing the output value by the input costs identified by SROI, a return for the activities reviewed of £9.83 for each £1 of public sector funding invested was calculated.

Ivan Annibal, Managing Director of Rose Regeneration said: “I think this was a unique commission. I am not aware of any other Destination Management Organisations that have undertaken a social return on investment analysis. The results, which are very good, remind us that investment in tourism promotion delivers community benefits for local people as well as supporting tourism businesses and attractions.”

Martin Peters, Chief Executive of Leicester Shire Promotions added: “Last year, we announced that our successful Stay Play Explore short break campaigns had generated in excess of 125,000 bednights for accommodation providers in Leicester and Leicestershire. However, we were keen to estimate the economic impact that some of our less tangible activities have made on the city and county and this proven SROI study has revealed a very healthy return on public sector investment of almost 10:1.”

The analysis was based on several key themes including:
ο King Richard III Visitor Centre
ο Foxton Locks
ο Loughborough - Loogabarooga Festival
ο Business Development
ο Established businesses given direct advice and support
ο New business ideas supported
ο Community Benefits
ο Number of people exceptionally encouraged to take a holiday/visit an attraction
ο Organisational Benefits
ο Coherence of Leicester/Leicestershire brand
ο Promotional Impacts
ο Greater understanding of nature and distinctive character of Leicester and Leicestershire