Saturday 03 December 2022

Floriade flower show flop set to cost Almere over €90 million

One of the Floriade displays. Photo:

The flopped Floriade plant show in Almere will have made a loss heading towards €100 million for the local authority, broadcaster Omroep Flevoland has reported.

With four days until the show closes for good, the number of visitors has been again downgraded to 680,000. Before the event opened, the organisers had hoped for two million visitors over the five-month season.

Some €42 million of the loss is down to disappointing ticket sales and €43 million to loans made to the Floriade organisation which cannot be repaid. Council officials have not yet said what a further €6.6 million loss, included in a briefing to local councillors this week, is down to. More financial surprises have not been ruled out.

Reviews of the show have been poor and the event was also criticised for its high prices. The continuing impact of coronavirus on foreign visitor numbers in particular also took their toll.

The financial drama led to the resignation of local council’s executive board in June.

The Floriade – which happens in a different city every 10 years – is due to run until October 9.

The event was first held in Rotterdam in 1960 with the aim of strengthening the image of the Dutch horticulture sector, and to promote exports, but has since expanded into an international plant and garden show with exhibitors from other countries.

The last Floriades in Venlo, Haarlemermeer and Zoetermeer also lost money.

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