Tag Archives: Rihanna Barbados Tourism Deal

Barbados Government paid Rihanna £1.25 million for concert. Good value or outrageous?

Updated: December 9, 2011

Bajans were told Rihanna was performing “for free”

Thanks to an old friend for referring us back to an August 11, 2011 opinion piece in The Nation. Luigi Marshall – Kudos for making Rihanna show happen.

Mr. Marshall had very positive things to say about the Rihanna concert and we recommend that our readers have a look. One piece of info though: Mr. Marshall repeats the information given at the time that Rihanna was doing the show “for free”. According to the latest revelations, that might not have been true.

But whether Rihanna performed for free or not, as Nevermind Kurt says in his piece below, it is difficult to quantify the benefits from the Rihanna – Barbados association. Mr. Marshall falls into the trap of speculating what the numbers might have been. He pulls them right out of the air and then waves them around to illustrate how much money Bajans made because of the concert. Did 4,000 people arrive on the island just for the concert? I suppose they could have. How did they get here? They didn’t all fly into Grantley Adams in the two days prior to the concert, that’s for sure!

Could it be true that many or even most of the visitors who attended the concert were already here or planned to be here concert or not? I suppose that someone at the BTA has the ability to answer the questions about benefits and costs of the Rihanna concert. I wonder why the BTA hasn’t made a statement about that and backed it up with numbers?

The Daily Star is now repeating that Rihanna was paid for her concert and that she’ll be doing a New Year’s gig at Sandy Lane…

“The government paid Rihanna £1.25million to perform at Barbados Carnival in August as she is obviously their biggest export.

“Everyone is very excited to hear that she’ll be back again so soon and plenty of the islanders are hoping to catch a glimpse of her in town even if they can’t get into the party.”

… from The Daily Star’s Rihanna to sing for Simon Cowell

That’s  £1.25 million for Rihanna… PLUS everything else

by Nevermind Kurt

Music industry sources say that our government paid Bajan Sex Queen Rihanna £1.25 million to appear at her toned-down Kensington Oval concert last August. That’s about US$2.5 million dollars – or 5 million Bajan dollars – and it doesn’t count the venue expenses and everything else associated with the concert. The US$2.5 million dollars is just the pocket change for Rihanna and her entourage.

US$2.5 million dollars buys a whole lotta cutters and beer down at Marcia’s Place in Oistins!

But maybe US$2.5 million dollars was a good price for the Rihanna show. What do I know? So if we paid US$2.5 million of public funds to Rihanna, and the ticket sales were X number of tickets @ an average of X $ per bottom, maybe our overall cost wasn’t US$2.5 million. Or maybe not…

Did the Rihanna concert revenue go to repaying the government ‘investment’? Without Freedom of Information laws we taxpayers will never know.

The government is going to say that visitor numbers were up X% as a result of the Rihanna concert, but that’s not really verifiable with any certainty. I think that the Rihanna concert and long-term engagement by the Barbados Tourism Authority is totally unquantifiable when it comes to measuring the financial benefits to Barbados vs. the cost.

The real question I have is this…

How many people will travel to Barbados as a direct result of the US$2.5 million paid to Rihanna for a single concert in Barbados?

Real doubts about Rihanna’s value to the Barbados tourism brand

As I’ve said on BFP before, most advertising is geared to younger people not because they have disposable income, but to foster brand loyalty early on. If we’re trying to attract the hoards of screaming teenagers (primarily girls) that attend Rihanna’s concerts to be lifelong Barbados fans, then Rihanna’s name associated with Barbados tourism might yield some results in twenty years.

If, however, the BTA thinks that Rihanna’s name will yield more folks from the American midwest that the BTA said we were targeting last year, the results might be disappointing.

I have the impression that Rihanna’s fame is a hoped for opportunity on the part of the Barbados Tourism Authority that might not yield real benefits in terms of increased tourism revenue.

I’d love to be proven wrong. I’d love to see that whatever we’re paying Rihanna in tax dollars is returned ten-fold.

Prime Minister Stuart: Over to you. Show me.



Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Rihanna

Rihanna’s advice to parents: “Make sure your children don’t turn out like US.”

Did Prime Minister Stuart and BTA Executive attend Rihanna’s concert?

By all accounts Rihanna’s concert on August 5th was a big success in many ways. Her fans had a wonderful evening even if some of the things she did caused more than a few jaws to drop. Everybody thought she’d turn her “raunchy” setting down to “low” for the homecoming concert but about the only thing she didn’t simulate on stage was oral sex. Then again, every artiste has to leave some room for development, so maybe we’ll see the oral sex on stage next time.

And there will be a next time because the Barbados Tourism Authority already announced they are talking to Rihanna’s people about doing it again. I wonder if they can find the same 60 year old guy for Rihanna to pull up on stage and simulate sex with? Maybe they can get his wife in on the act and have a awesome threesome. Reminds me of a wild time we had on the beach one night way back when. Well, hey… if that’s the standard for the Barbados Tourism Authority’s top representative, it should be okay for the rest of us!

What made Rihanna’s concert a “success” ?

Everyone says that RiRi’s concert was a success for Barbados so it must be so. I guess. We’ll all have to guess because it is a big secret who made the money or how much it cost the taxpapers. Rihanna doesn’t usually have to have her concerts subsidized, but it would still be nice for we taxpayers to know how much it cost us.

I’m still having trouble with the whole Rihanna – Barbados Tourism Authority deal. Sure, Rihanna’s concert raised the island’s profile for one news cycle, but I’m not convinced that translates into a return on investment in the form of increased tourism and investment.

I’m not sure whether Rihanna is capable of reaching the right audience for Barbados: high end travelers who will see her grinding away on stage and immediately think “Honey, let’s head for Barbados next vacation.”

If it’s all about making publicity and not reaching target markets, let’s really go to town and get Prime Minister Freundel Stuart up on stage to simulate sex with Rihanna. NOW THAT would get some worldwide press coverage. Matter a fact, get Owen Arthur and Mia and….

OH WAIT!!!!   OH MY!  I just had an idea for a couple of photoshop cartoons. OHHHHH This will be awesome! Give me a week or two to round up the talent and get in the mood.

Barbados Free Press isn’t the only publication wondering about Rihanna’s performances. Here’s an example from the Hollywood Reporter…

Rihanna needs to be careful and more mindful of her behavior. But, as she articulated to fans after one parents group recently claimed that her “Man Down” video glamorized murder, she’s not in the business of making appeasing the polyanna demographic. She tweeted, “I’m a 23 year old rockstar with NO KIDS! What’s up with everybody wantin me to be a parent? I’m just a girl, I can only be your/our voice! We have the freedom to make art, LET US! Its your job to make sure they don’t turn out like US. U can’t hide kids from society or they’ll never learn how to adapt!”

So much for hoping she changes. At the very least, we hope she passes on future on-stage inter-generational simulated sex.

From the Hollywood Life story Rihanna, Tone It Down A Notch! Simulating Sex On-Stage With With A 60-Year-Old Stranger? Ick!

Teach your children well…

Rihanna is 23 years old, a multi-millionaire with servants that come running. She’s pursued, feted and surrounded by important rich people feeding her whatever they think she wants to hear. She’s a valuable commodity and everybody, including the Barbados Tourism Authority and the Government of Barbados, wants a piece of the action. To be seen with Rihanna is to be publicly affirmed that you’re a somebody. Or a some-Country.

Money is what it’s all about – Not what Barbados is all about or should be or could be. Or was.

Our political and tourism leadership is so desperate and bankrupt of ideas that they can only latch onto Today’s Big Thing no matter what it is and with no regard for our heritage and how we want our country to be. Yesterday we embraced medical tourism. Today it’s Rihanna. Tomorrow it will be gambling. Maybe legalized prostitution after that ’cause we’re running out of things to sell ’bout hey.

I’m looking forward to the next Rihanna concert. The nature of relying upon publicity rather than product quality is that the publicity will have to be ever bigger, raunchier and more shocking to garner attention. Maybe Prime Minister Stuart will take the stage!

We’re teaching our children well…

What a powerful video. A big thanks to our long time reader UB. I don’t know where you come up with these gems, but we really appreciate them.


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Ethics, Rihanna