There will be something to suit everyone’s taste at the second Nelson Mandela Bay Sevens festival that takes place at the Grey School campus from Friday to Sunday.

Laurence Finn, NMB Sevens’ marketing director, says they have tried to emulate the hugely successful business models developed by the Hong Kong and Dubai Sevens tournaments.

There will be something to suit everyone’s taste at the second Nelson Mandela Bay Sevens festival that takes place at the Grey School campus from Friday to Sunday.

Laurence Finn, NMB Sevens’ marketing director, says they have tried to emulate the hugely successful business models developed by the Hong Kong and Dubai Sevens tournaments.

“Apart from the massive corporate opportunities, these events have shown that the nature of the sevens game is perfect to anchor other types of entertainment. In doing so, the event appeals to a much broader audience.”

Apart from the sevens action, this year’s event also includes touchies, corporate football, action netball and hockey. Nine fields will be used to accommodate the 3 000 participants.

In the evenings, some of the country’s finest artists and groups including Kurt Darren, Watershed, NKD and Dawnay will entertain participants and spectators. There will also be a retail area, a pampering area for women and adventure and kids zones.

“High-quality products and brands will be on display in the retail area and we have made a special effort to spoil the ladies with pampering skin and body treatments and products on offer,” says Finn.

Persons aged between 18 and 23 can enjoy the Puma Party in a huge marquee tent conveniently placed opposite the centre of the A-field. The first 300 ticket-holders in this age group to apply for a VIP pass will be granted entrance to this exclusive party.

Finn says an estimated R21 million will be pumped directly into the local economy because of the three-day event, which includes 7 200 bed nights for out-of-town spectators, media, organisers and participants.

“In addition, the tournament will create temporary employment of nearly 18 000 man hours.” According to him, 160 officials will be on duty during the event and BEE suppliers are being used wherever possible.

The tournament, which cost R3,5 million to set up, is a superb marketing tool to promote Nelson Mandela Bay and the Eastern Cape, says Finn. He commends the metro for their vision in backing the event.

He says the NMB Sevens is set to have huge spin-offs for the metro in the long term. “It promotes the metro as a tourist destination and, perhaps more importantly, demonstrates that the province is capable of hosting world-class events.

With 16 international teams invited to take part against top local sides, the tournament is expected to create huge media interest here and abroad. The event will be broadcast live on SuperSport.

A highlights package will be aired worldwide and content has already been requested by England, France, Wales, Ireland, Holland, Fiji, New Zealand, Australia and the USA.

International teams include the French Froggies, British Samurai, British Army and Tigers from the USA. The Emerging Springboks, University of the Free State, SA Rugby Legends, Eastern Province, Blue Bulls and Lions top the local line-up.

Tickets are on sale at Computicket. A weekend pass of R150 for adults and R75 for children under 12 includes access to all the entertainment and the concerts.

For more information, visit www.nmbs.co.za or phone Laurence Finn at 084 507 3175