SBD/9/Franchises

MARINERS OPEN THEIR BOOKS TO SHOW "EYE-POPPING" LOSSES

     In their bid to secure financing for a new stadium, the
Mariners "offered a look at the sea of red ink that threatens to
wash away" the franchise, according to Rebecca Boren of the
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER.  By the end of the year, losses will
total $67M since Baseball Club of America, the consortium of
Nintendo of America and local business leaders, bought the team
for $100M in '92.  In the ten month fiscal year in '94, the team
lost $15M, and team President Chuck Armstrong predicted the team
would "lose an eye-popping" $30M in '95.  Team VP/Finance and
Administration Brian Beggs: "Fifteen or 17 (million dollars in
losses) causes consternation.  But then when they pop up to $30
million, it's a whole different kettle of fish."  The released
statements are part of the "team's pitch" for public financing
for a new retractable-dome facility.  Voters in King County will
vote on September 19 to raise the sales tax from 8.2% to 8.3% to
build a new ballpark for the Mariners, and pay for renovation
improvement to the Kingdome for the Seahawks (Rebecca Boren,
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER, 8/9).  Columnist Laura Vecsey asks
when the Mariners will begin "this so-called stadium campaign."
Vecsey: "When can I expect the first piece of direct mail that
says we must build this stadium not for the owners and players
but for ourselves?" (SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER, 8/9).
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