SBD/Issue 60/Sports Industrialists

Flannery Leaves Ripken Baseball To Start Digital Media Company

Chris Flannery has left his position as Ripken Baseball President after more than eight years to start his own digital media operation. Flannery joined Ripken Baseball in '02, shortly after the company's formation and helped build it into a sprawling empire that includes three minor league baseball teams; a well-known youth baseball enterprise encompassing amateur leagues, tournaments and camps; an athletic field design and management concern; and Cal Ripken's various philanthropic and licensing interests. "It's been a fabulous run, and (Ripken Baseball founders Cal and Bill Ripken) gave me a lot of latitude and trust. But I'm an entrepreneur at heart, and I'm ready to go back to that again," Flannery said. "The various businesses with Ripken Baseball are pretty much optimized now. I set out to help build a successful operation in the name of Cal and Billy, and mission accomplished. But it wasn't my name. I want to do something more of my own now." Flannery, whose varied professional background includes stops in retail, e-commerce and marketing, declined to specify the nature of his next company, but said it would carry a significant international focus. A formal plan for the forthcoming entity is expected in the first quarter of next year. "I don't want to say too much about it now, but it will be much more about media and content than technology."

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