DD2177 2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup

Type of decision: 
Director's decision
Date signed: 
04 December 2017
Decision by: 
Jeff Jacobs, Head of Paid Service

Executive summary

This decision seeks approval to commit a total of £75,000 from the Major Events budget towards delivery of the 2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup.  The event will be staged at the Copper Box Arena in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in February 2018.



That the Executive Director of Communities and Intelligence approves grant funding of £75,000 to Table Tennis England towards the cost of staging the 2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup.


Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

1.1     Background

1.1.1    The success of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games has cemented London’s position as a world-leading host of major sporting events. Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park has also added significantly to the range of world class sporting facilities available for hosting events in London. A key part of the on-going legacy of London 2012 is ensuring that these facilities and others around London be regularly and fully made use of.

1.1.2    London has already secured a portfolio of additional events that will help sustain our position as a world-leading host and is in keeping with the stated legacy aims from London 2012, one of which is to ensure that the facilities built for the Games continue to be used to stage high-level international sporting events. They include the 2015 Rugby World Cup, 2015 European Hockey Championships, 2016 European Swimming Championships, 2016 Track Cycling World Championships, 2017 IAAF World Athletics Championships and IPC World Athletics Championships. 

1.1.3    Recognising that most major sporting events require some level of public support, the GLA allocated £2.4 million over four years to future major sporting events as part of the 2014/15 budget setting process. This Major Sports Events Fund supports the GLA’s major sporting events strategy for London, ‘London: Home of World Class Sport’, which was published in April 2014. 

1.1.4    The London-wide approach to bidding for and supporting major sporting events establishes the Mayor’s Office as the first point of call for anyone looking to bring their event to London, and firmly establishes the Mayor’s Office as London’s strategic lead for major sporting events.

1.2    2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup

1.2.1.    Table Tennis England has applied for a contribution towards staging costs for the 2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup at the Copper Box at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

1.2.2.    The World Team Cup is one of the four ‘gold star’ events owned by the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF).  It is held every two years and showcases the very best of world table tennis with 24 teams (12 male, 12 female) from the major nations in the sport.

1.2.3.    The International Table Tennis Federation are keen to explore the potential to bring further world level events to London on an annual basis. They acknowledge London as one of the most culturally diverse cities in the world, and believe the city to be the perfect location for the development of the sport in England. The 2018 World Team Cup is therefore seen by the ITTF as an opportunity for Table Tennis England and London to demonstrate their ability to deliver world level table tennis events.

1.2.4.    Table Tennis is an ethnically diverse sport. The community programme delivered alongside the event will enhance participation levels in London and contribute towards social integration, a key cornerstone of the new GLA community sport strategy for 2018 onwards.

1.2.5.    The GLA Events Steering Group (GESG) approved this proposal following its meeting on 5 September 2017.

Objectives and expected outcomes

2.1          The objectives of the proposed funding are to:

•    Support the successful hosting of the 2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup 
•    Support delivery of the GLA’s major sports events strategy, ‘London: Home of World Class Sport’;
•    Increase economic investment into London;
•    Increase international exposure of London;
•    Increase opportunities for Londoners to participate in sport and physical exercise programmes associated with major sporting events; 
•    Increase opportunities for Londoners to volunteer at a major sporting event.

Equality comments

3.1    Every major event that seeks financial support from the GLA must demonstrate how the event will engage with the local community, in line with the Mayor’s Sports Legacy Programme.

3.2    An equalities impact assessment has previously been undertaken on the overall Mayor’s Sports Legacy Programme.

3.3    According to Sport England Active People survey (APS 8 published in January 2015), levels of participation in sport and physical activity are variable across different socio-demographic groups in London. Across all 33 London boroughs, average figures indicate that 43% of men participate in sport at least once a week compared to 32% of women. 37% of Black Asian Minority Ethnic (BAME) people participate weekly compared to 39% of people of white origin. 19% of disabled people participate weekly compared to 40% of non-disabled people. 17% of people over the age of 65 participate weekly compared to 52% of those between the age of 16 and 25. 41% of people from socio-economic groups 1 to 4 participate weekly compared to 25% of people from socio-economic groups 5-8 (based on the National Statistics Socio-economic classification system).

3.4    Sports programmes supported by the Mayor’s Sports Legacy Programme engage significant numbers of women, disabled people, BAME people and people from lower socio-economic groups, both via sports participation programmes and training opportunities. We are seeking to increase participation opportunities for these groups through the Major Sports Events Engagement Fund that this event has also bid to.

3.5    The Sports Team will work with Table Tennis England and London Sport to develop a community engagement project associated with this event. This programme will focus on bringing communities together and engaging inactive people including older people. 

Other considerations

4.1     Key Risks and Issues



Likelihood / Impact

Response & Mitigation


That the event does not deliver against London’s key strategic objectives

Medium / Low

The evaluation process undertaken in order to determine city support for events is robust and thorough.


Assumptions made in England Table Tennis’ proposal were tested and challenged by the GLA and partners prior to deciding to offer financial support in order to ensure confidence that the event is likely to deliver on its claims.


Projected commercial income is not realised, putting the event at risk, and thereby exposing the Mayor/GLA to reputational risk.

Low / Low

Prior to committing GLA funding, a comprehensive and robust event budget with evidence of commitment from a range of public and private sector partners was submitted, thereby ensuring that the risk is spread.


Table Tennis England have already secured £192,000 cash sponsorship for the event which is an excellent result in the current market.


Reputational risk of supporting an event which is sponsored by an online gambling provider.

Low / Low

Nikki Soin, Commercial Partnerships Manager at the GLA, has been consulted and has advised that providing this is carefully monitored, there is no significant risk to the GLA. All marketing, communications and branding plans will be run by Nikki in the first instance to ensure this remains the case.


4.2     Links to Mayoral Strategies & Priorities

4.2.1    GLA support for the event will:
•    support delivery of the Mayor’s major sports events strategy, ‘London: Home of World Class Sport’;
•    support delivery of the Mayor’s grassroots sport policy, ‘A Sporting Future for London’;
•    assist in meeting the objectives of the Mayor’s Health Inequalities Strategy; 
•    promote social development and social cohesion in London;
•    assist the Mayor in delivering his commitment to a lasting sports legacy following the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games; and
•    support the Mayor’s priorities around volunteering and his Team London programme.

4.3     Impact Assessments and Consultations

4.3.1     An equalities impact assessment has previously been undertaken on the overall Mayor’s Sports Legacy Programme. Further information is available at Section 3 of this document.

4.3.2     In writing ‘A Sporting Future for London’, the GLA Sports Unit consulted extensively with over 400 individuals from over 100 different groups and organisations including national governing bodies of sport, the Pro-Active Partnerships, senior representatives from local authorities and a wide variety of sports clubs and community organisations. 

4.3.3     The conclusions reached received broad support from all key stakeholders and reaction to the plan itself has been very positive.

4.3.4    In writing ‘London: Home of World Class Sport’, the GLA Sports Unit consulted extensively with various national governing bodies of sport in the UK, Sport England, UK Sport, London Sport, relevant Local Authorities, LLDC, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, London & Partners, sports venue owners in London and Transport for London. The strategy has been greatly welcomed by all key London stakeholders and partners, as well as the key national agencies identified above.




Financial comments

5.1    Approval is being sought for expenditure up to £75,000 for the 2018 Table Tennis World Team Cup.

5.2    This expenditure will be funded from the 2017-18 Major Events budget within the Team London and Sports unit.

Planned delivery approach and next steps

7.1      The GLA Sports Team is working closely with Table Tennis England to ensure effective planning for the event. 

7.2    The GLA will receive regular reports from Table Tennis England which will include summaries on the following: 

•    General event update
•    Budget
•    Sponsorship (particularly 12BET agreement)
•    Ticket sales and marketing
•    Risks/Issues
•    Community Engagement

7.3    Next steps are as follows:



DD Signed

November 2017

Funding Agreement Executed

November 2017

Event held

February 2018



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