The race that stops the nation, but not retail...

On Tuesday the 5th of November, it’s there again, the Melbourne Cup, or the race that stops the nation. The event has been organised since 1861 and is a great happening for every Australian, and that’s not only because of the race… Of course wagering on race is a serious aspect for many people, but more importantly, it’s about the glitz, the fashion, and alcohol. Last year Australia’s original major event produced a record of $447.6 million in gross benefit to Victoria’s economy, according to the Victorian Racing Club.

In the last five years, the Melbourne Cup Carnival has grown by over 20%, and this also has its effects on retail spending. The amount spent on retail represents a value of $62.9 million, where the biggest part is spent on fashion items such as shoes, dresses, suits hats, and fascinators. In addition meals, food and beverages are an important part of the expenditures with a value of over $29.2 million.

It's not only about retail, but it’s basically the whole economy that benefits from this event. It provides employment for more than 21,000 staff and contractors working for more than 800 companies in the lead-up and during the event.


In case of an event, you need to take many influencing factors into account to create a forecast. In order to take advantage, it’s crucial for companies to supply their customers in order to not lose potential sales. This can only be done by having the right stock, at the right place at the right time. It can be very challenging to predict regular demand, let alone demand during a special event. There are many influencing factors that need to be taken into account to create a forecast. A good predictor is to look at the previous year’s event and calculate the realised uplifts in sales. These can be taken into account for this year, considering the growth rates in sales and potential changes in patterns. Especially for items with long lead times accurate planning is critical and will determine the degree of success.

Again the forecasts expect the economic contributions for Victoria’s economy to grow this year; however, we will only get to know the results after the Carnival has taken place. The same of course goes for the winner of the race.

inventory management on events and promotions