Canadian Soccer fans are in the midst of a bull market, in particular with the recent news that North America has been awarded the hosting rights for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.
Soccer has been booming in Canada for the past several years, making the timing for Canada to put forth a collective bid with the United States and Mexico all the more exciting. In 2019, Canada will welcome the Canadian Premier League, a coast-to-coast professional soccer league. Further, Canada’s MLS Franchises (Toronto FC, Vancouver Whitecaps and Montreal Impact) have all continued to grow their passionate fan bases; and on the pitch, 2018 saw Toronto FC win the MLS Cup for the first time in club history. The Reds followed up their championship winning season with a deep run in the CONCACAF Champions League that certainly captured the hearts of even more Canadians. Lastly but certainly not least, the announcement comes on the heels of Canada having successfully hosted the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.
However, despite all of Soccer’s recent successes, an event such as the FIFA World Cup is not without it’s challenges. It’s governing organization has been mired in controversy and many question the cost/benefit of hosting these types of events.
Cary Kaplan, President of Cosmos Sports & Entertainment is one of Canada’s foremost Sports Marketing experts. In addition to his role with Cosmos, Cary also serves as President & General Manager of the Brampton Beast Hockey Club, the ECHL affiliate of the Montreal Canadiens.
Prior to founding Cosmos, Cary was a proud employee of the Edmonton Oilers as President of their AHL team, the Hamilton Bulldogs. Cary also served as the Commissioner of the Canadian Soccer League from 2005-2009.
Cary’s professional career in Sports Marketing has spanned more than 20 years and includes work with organizations like the NHL, Houston Rockets, Phoenix Suns, Arizona Coyotes, Chicago Cubs, 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup and many more.
Cary is available to discuss and/or provide comment on sports marketing related matters arising out of the 2026 FIFA World Cup, with topics including:
- Economic impact of World Cup matches being hosted in Canada
- Legacy impacts on future growth of Soccer in Canada
- Ticketing, Attendance, and the Secondary Market
- Sponsorship activation leading up to and through the event
- Event as a precursor to Toronto eventually hosting the Summer Olympics