Drake‘s influence on music is huge, having set new streaming records with his latest album, Scorpion, and getting so much support on Spotify it had some customers demanding refunds. But it doesn’t stop there.
According to marketing and branding consultant Gordon Hendren in a recent Vice News report, the hip-hop icon’s influence is responsible for about 5 percent of the city’s $8.8 billion total annual tourism income. That amounts to about $440 million coming in, thanks to his repping his hometown, the Toronto Raptors and various restaurants and clubs around the city.
“He’s helped to rebrand the city,” Hendren said in the piece. “He’s kind of made himself the same as Toronto.”
As proof, Vice points to Drake’s influence in coining the nickname “The Six” or “The 6ix,” his OVO brand, featuring various landmarks and local establishments in music videos and on album art and more. Speaking with Ward 37 Councillor Michael Thompson, he described using Drake as a selling-point to bring a $147 million tech conference to Toronto for the next three years.
“When I mentioned this was home of Drake, the people just kind of went crazy — just the mere mention of his name,” he said. “The native son is here, he’s got a great brand, we’re gonna kind of hitch ourselves on it a little bit and get pulled up along the way.”
Watch the segment here: