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Ducey: Cardinals’ trip to London a ‘great’ business week for Arizona

(Source: Mark Dalton/Twitter)
LISTEN: Doug Ducey and Michael Bidwill from London

The Arizona Cardinals have labeled their visit to London as a business trip.

Winning Sunday against the Los Angeles Rams at Twickenham Stadium has been the sole focus, but from a wider lens, the NFL team’s week of work was important for the state of Arizona. That, too, was about business.

“I’m here as a football fan, but I see this as an ambassador (trip) for Arizona of what this club is doing, of positive things for the state,” said Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, who on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s pregame coverage was joined Cardinals president Michael Bidwill.

“We met with a lot of leaders and decision-makers and influencers over here that can benefit Arizona, bring us jobs in the state of Arizona. So we’ve conducted a lot of business all week.”

For Arizona, the United Kingdom ranked fifth in value of trade exports and 10th in value of imports during 2016, according to

Over the past few days, Ducey met one-on-one with “high-level international business leaders.” Those meetings were arranged by the Arizona Commerce Authority.

Bidwill also found himself involved in business meetings leading into the Sunday game.

“The governor’s done a terrific job and he’s our best salesman,” Bidwill said. “We’ve talked to a lot of businesses, brands you’d recognize … a lot of companies that are looking to expand in the United States and are looking at Arizona.

“It’s been a fun week of talking Arizona, talking Arizona business.”

Across the Atlantic Ocean, Bidwill said the Cardinals’ brand has grown stronger. He said research done by the NFL showed that American football was just the 30th most popular sport in the United Kingdom “a few years ago,” but it’s now seventh- or eighth-most popular.

The Cardinals’ documentary series “All Or Nothing” that was distributed digitally in the United Kingdom, Germany and other parts of Europe helped build the team’s popularity, Bidwill said.

And in turn, that led to an opportunity for Ducey and the state of Arizona.

“It’s been a great week,” Ducey said. “I was amazed how full it was at fans coming out early and what we saw at the pep rally, not only of our fans that flew out from Arizona but from all over Europe, who represent the BirdGang, who love these players, who know these coaches, who know the owner, who’ve seen ‘All Or Nothing.'”

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