Role of international celebrity event hosting on tour firms performance in Nairobi city county, Kenya
Kamau, George Gikuni
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Events are crucial for development of destinations across different parts of the world since they possess important social, cultural, and economic outputs. International celebrity events provide additional destination attraction and they create a sustainable tourism industry across many parts of the world. Despite research in recent times in events gaining tremendous interest among scholars and emerging as a crucial area of study, little is known on how international celebrity events hosting influences tour firms’ performance. In effect, the purpose of the study was to explore the role of international celebrity events hosting on tour firms’ performance in Nairobi City County. A cross-sectional descriptive survey design underpinned this study. The target population for the study encompassed managerial employees drawn from tour firms registered with the Kenya Association of Tour Operators and key informants who were drawn from government bodies directly involved in tourism. Proportionate stratified and random sampling approaches were used to sample the managerial employees while purposive sampling technique utilized to select key informants. Questionnaires and interview schedules were used for collection of data. The target population comprised of 2,100 employees drawn 329 tour firms. The sample size of the study constituted of 390 managerial employees who were drawn from all the 329 tour firms registered with the Kenya Association of Tour Operators, as well as 10 key informants. Validity of the instruments was assessed by the specialists in the area and supervisors from the department of Tourism Management, whereas Cronbach’s alpha reliability was assessed by use of the test-retest method. Quantitative data was analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) in the form of descriptive and inferential statistics where the former included the standard deviation, mean, frequencies, and percentages while regression and correlation analysis constituted the latter. Data presentation was carried out using of tables. The study recorded a questionnaire return rate and interview response rate of 71.3% and 100% respectively, thus satisfactory for this research work. The results of the study might be useful to tourism stakeholders and will supplement the existing body of knowledge on tourism. Based on the findings of the study, hosting of the profiled international celebrity events (r=0.269, p=0.000), international celebrity events destination choice (r=0.531, p=0.000), and international celebrity events destination promotion (r=0.308, p=0.000) exhibited a positive and statistically significant relationship with tour firms’ performance in Nairobi City County. Likewise, the relationship between international celebrity events hosting and tour firms’ performance was moderated by technology (r=0.138, p=0.05) According to the overall results, the study concluded that the all the dimensions of international celebrity events hosting influenced tour firms’ performance. The study recommends hosting of different types of international celebrity events in the country as there are more arising every year globally. Further, the study recommends development of destinations where necessary or appropriate event facilities and resources should be made available. There is need to develop and organize special international celebrity events in the country, which will increase the competitiveness of Nairobi City County as a preferred tourist destination.