WHEN the Swans were promoted to football’s top table the city was buoyant on a wave of excitement at the prospect of its team being in the best football league in the world.
But the move brought with it more than a renewed sporting spirit — the first season alone was worth more £58 million to the local economy.
And it has helped create and protect an estimated 400 jobs — 360 of which have been in Swansea.
The figures have been released as part of an economic impact study of how Premier League status has affected Swansea and Wales.
Nick Bradley, Swansea Council’s cabinet member for regeneration, said: “The Swans’ Premier League adventure has been an incredible success story for the club, for Wales and for Swansea.
“The value of the Swans success to the local economy is even greater than Chelsea’s widely-reported prize money for winning the Champions League this year.
“That’s an incredible achievement. I want to pay tribute to the joint effort between the Welsh Government, Swansea Council, their partners and, of course, the Swans for making sure the economic benefits have been felt alongside the tremendous feel-good factor that’s been generated right across the city.”
The report says that while the majority of the economic value was created directly by the football club, most of the jobs created and safeguarded were from non- footballing activity.
The most significant element of this was the spending power of visiting fans who visited pubs, clubs and restaurants and stayed in hotels as a direct result of attending games at the Liberty Stadium.
Hotels in Swansea have been repeatedly out-performing hotels in Cardiff when it comes to occupation rates in recent months.
Welsh Government Business Minister and Gower AM Edwina Hart said: “I welcome the results of this latest economic impact study, which tracks the local economic benefits of the thousands of football fans who attended Premier League matches at the Liberty Stadium last season.
“Swansea City FC’s promotion and success in the Premier League has also exposed Wales to a worldwide television audience and provided the Welsh Government with rich opportunities to promote our economic development and tourism messages, not just for the Swansea region, but for Wales.
“As a result, an audience of millions has been introduced to key messages about Wales that challenge perceptions and support our economic development campaigns.”
Mr Bradley said that the Swans’ success story, along with the success of the Ospreys, the Wales National Pool Swansea’s medal haul at the Paralympic games and the tens of thousands who turned out for the Olympic Torch relay had made 2012 a golden year for the city.
He said: “It has been a fantastic year for sport in our city.”