SBD/Issue 14/Franchises

WPS Washington Freedom Owners Seeking New Investors For Club

 

WPS Washington Freedom Owners John and Maureen Hendricks are "seeking to sell a portion of the club or find new partners ahead of the 2011 WPS season," according to Steve Goff of the WASHINGTON POST. Club officials said that they are "making progress but have yet to reach a deal," and "no deadline has been set." While the ownership "remains unsettled, the Freedom has delayed negotiations involving player contracts." Goff notes the Freedom averaged 3,422 spectators for 11 home matches this season at Maryland SoccerPlex (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 9/29).

HOPING FOR BRIGHTER DAYS AHEAD: In San Jose, Almond & Schwab noted with the WPS' second season having just been completed, the league "limps into its third season with cost-cutting initiatives and a new chief executive determined to outlast a terrible economy and build stability." Sky Blue FC President & CEO Thomas Hofstetter said that his team "lost $2.9 million last year and expects to lose $2 million more this year." FC Gold Pride "lost close to $3 million in 2009 but expects losses to be less this year," and other team owners "hope to break even next year because of recent cost-cutting measures." Almond & Schwab noted the league's seven owners are "shifting emphasis away from a central hierarchy to focus locally." WPS officials also are "talking to the U.S. Soccer Federation, the national governing body for the sport, about getting subsidized" (SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS, 9/29).





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