What does March Madness mean for business?

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — The NCAA tournament has finally begun.

With it come bracket busters, buzzer beaters, and upsets.

For businesses, they either love it, or hate it.

For some people, getting involved in March Madness at their jobs is a must.

“We do our brackets every year. May or may not have a pool involved,” said basketball fan Tim Ogburn.

There was a decent sized crowd at Bubba’s 33 on Powers Boulevard. Some said they got off work early. Others admitted to playing hooky. Either way, it’s good for the bar.

“Over this first weekend we expect to see a 20 to 25 percent increase from what we normally do, because it’s just exciting and people want to be a part of this,” said Bubba’s 33 manager Rob Auw.

While it’s great for a bar to be packed in the middle of the day on a Thursday during March Madness, studies show that businesses in the U.S. will lose over a billion dollars in revenue during the tournament because of low productivity.

“Definitely checking stats. I have the ESPN app on the phone giving you updates. You might work for five minutes, watch basketball for 20, work for five, basketball 20,” said Ogburn.

Some people said the lack in productivity isn’t that bad, because the benefits of enjoying the madness outweigh the negatives.

“You might have a conversation or two that has to do with the basketball tournament rather than what you’ve got going on at the office, but if anything that’s bringing people together, which is driving people in the office to be better,” said basketball fan Ari Opsahl.

The bar said this weekend will be their busiest and then business will taper off a little bit.

Work productivity should start returning to normal next week as well, because a lot of people’s brackets will be busted after the weekend’s action.

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