RTE, the Irish national broadcaster, has revealed through a freedom of information request, that it spent €337,000 sending Nicky Byrne to Stockholm to compete in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest.
The amount covers €64,657 for sending Nicky and the Irish delegation of 18 people to Stockholm, including their flights, hotels and meals, plus the Eurovision entry fee of €88,472, which each country pays to help the host country cover the costs of putting on the show. This didn’t cover any payment to Nicky himself, as he waived his performance fee so more money could be put into production and promotion of the song. A spokesperson for RTE has said
“Providing seven-and-a-half hours of live entertainment content, the Eurovision Song Contest represents excellent value for money for RTE and for Irish television licence fee payers,”
The final for Eurovision 2016 brought in over 1.1 million viewers, which is almost a quarter of the population of Ireland.
Despite their best efforts, and Ireland’s long history of doing well in the contest, Nicky Byrne failed to qualify for the final in 2016, but this years entry Brendan Murray hopes to do better this year with his song Dying to Try.
You can revisit Nicky’s 2016 entry Sunlight below