SBD/July 29, 2011/Franchises

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  • Packers Detail Profitable Fiscal Year During Shareholders Meeting

    Murphy spoke to estimated 11,700 Packers shareholders at annual meeting

    Packers' shareholders on Thursday got a chance "to celebrate the Super Bowl championship in a big way at Lambeau Field," with the franchise reporting a "net income of $17.1 million for the fiscal year ending March 31," according to Don Walker of the MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL. Packers President & CEO Mark Murphy, team execs and BOD members "reminded shareholders -- there are 112,207 of them around the world -- of the tradition and uniqueness of the league's only publicly owned franchise." Murphy told an estimated 11,700 in attendance Thursday was "a celebration." Packers VP/Administration & General Counsel Jason Wied during the shareholders meeting "spoke of how important the franchise is to the greater Green Bay area," saying that the "economic impact of the Packers to the community equates to $1,100 per person." Walker notes the Bills' franchise "has an economic impact on the community of $34 per person." The Packers also "outlined changes to come" at Lambeau Field, indicating that "as early as February, the franchise hopes to break ground on an addition of approximately 7,000 seats in the south end zone area." The Packers "down the road" may develop land the team controls around the stadium. Murphy indicated that "there is no timetable for that, but there is talk of a youth sports village, a health and wellness clinic and retail." The team also plans "to be more aggressive in trying to generate more local revenue." Team officials said that they "hope to provide more Packers information and features on different media platforms by developing more e-commerce and increasing digital advertising." The officials also disclosed that the Packers "sold more apparel last season than any other team" in the NFL, and that the team's website "ranks first in the league in terms of page views." The Packers are set to open their season against the Saints at Lambeau on Sept. 8, and Murphy indicated that there "would be a concert on the day of the game" (MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL, 7/29).

    REGISTERS RINGING: Packers BOD member Mike Weller said that the Packers Pro Shop "contributed $11.3 million to revenue last season." The team "renovated Lambeau Field in 2003 so that it could earn more local revenue, which is not included in league-wide revenue sharing." That renovation "allowed it to build a bigger Pro Shop." Wied said, "We've been able to set aside more revenue in the last seven years than we did the first 80 years" (GREEN BAY PRESS-GAZETTE, 7/29).

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  • Franchise Notes

    Dennis Wasser, an attorney for Jamie McCourt, "would not say whether his client had spoken" with Penguins co-Owner Ron Burkle about joining her in a bid to acquire the Dodgers, but he said that McCourt "had not reached a pact with him or anyone else." Wasser: "There is no deal. There is no draft of a deal. There are several qualified prospective buyers with a very keen interest who have called and inquired about the availability of the team." In L.A., Bill Shaikin notes Burkle is "believed to be interested in buying" the team. Jamie McCourt Thursday asked that her "request for an immediate sale of the Dodgers be withdrawn, conceding that the disposition of the team for now is under the control of a Delaware Bankruptcy Court" (L.A. TIMES, 7/29).

    GETTING HIS KICKS: F1 Team Lotus Owner Tony Fernandes is "plotting a [US$163M] move to buy" EPL club Queens Park Rangers. F1 Management Chair Bernie Ecclestone holds a 62% share of the soccer team, and although investor Flavio Briatore has an option to buy the shares, it is "believed the pair have given Fernandes the go-ahead for the move." QPR's other shareholder, Lakshmi Mittal, "has failed to secure Ecclestone's shares after refusing to meet the asking price" (London DAILY MAIL, 7/29).
     
    SUNNY SIDE UP: In Phoenix, Paul Coro reported Suns employees "were assured via e-mail in June that they would not face layoffs or pay cuts for the rest of 2011." That e-mail stipulation is "consistent with what most team employees elsewhere in the league have been told." Meanwhile, as the NBA lockout continues, the team's website "now stars the Suns Dancers and the Gorilla," and players' names "only are mentioned on a roster link." Large images of Suns players in the US Airways Center pavilion "also were taken down prior to the start of the lockout on July 1" (ARIZONA REPUBLIC, 7/28).

    PAY TO PLAY: In DC, Dan Steinberg noted Monumental Sports & Entertainment is selling $250 passes that offer "discounts to 'select sporting events,' and 'special pre-sale ticket access to all Capitals, Wizards and Mystics regular-season and playoff games." Steinberg: "I’m sure I’m missing something, but paying $250 for the right to buy tickets has a very odd feel to me" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 7/28).

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