SBD/April 17, 2014/Franchises

NBA Kings See Revenue, Attendance Spike In First Year Under New Ownership Group

The NBA Kings' new ownership group led by Managing Partner Vivek Ranadive "reenergized an organization that had been gasping for resources during the last few years of the previous regime," according to Dale Kasler of the SACRAMENTO BEE. Ranadive and his investors "spent more on marketing and player salaries," and gave Sleep Train Arena a "modest face-lift, even as they poured millions into preparations for a new downtown venue." Last night's season finale against the Suns marked the season's 14th sellout, the "most in seven years." The Kings' average home attendance of 16,265 prior to last night represented an 18.3% "increase over last year." Team President Chris Granger said of the fans, "After what they've been through for so long, it's really been refreshing to see attendance improve this much and this soon. Season ticket sales are off to a strong start for next year." Granger "promised more changes for Sleep Train and described the makeover of the Kings organization as a work in progress." Kasler writes improvements "were evident on and off the court" this season. Player payroll was "among the league's lowest the past few seasons" before increasing 17% to nearly $63M for '13-14. The Kings also "raised their profile considerably," adding TNT's Shaquille O’Neal as a part owner. Granger said that sponsorship revenue "more than doubled this year." While Granger did not offer details, he said the organization "will continue to invest" in Sleep Train Arena, despite being in the process of developing a new venue (SACRAMENTO BEE, 4/17).
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