SBD/May 14, 2014/Franchises

Jaguars' Khan, Lamping Talk Renovations, Revenues During State Of Franchise Address

Khan outlined how the Jaguars' London game exceeded revenue expectations

The Jaguars used their “State of the Franchise” presentation yesterday to “float three more ideas that might be far from a reality but have clearly been discussed,” according to Ryan O’Halloran of the FLORIDA TIMES-UNION. Team President Mark Lamping “showed renderings of an indoor practice facility, significant East and West Club renovations and the potential of putting a roof over the playing field.” Jags Owner Shahid Khan said, “You want to come up with a lot of ideas and then be able to focus on a few you can turn into reality.” O’Halloran notes the Jags sold 72.4% of their club seats last year, the “average ticket price is $20 below the league average, ticket sales accounted for 48 percent of the local revenue and there will be no home-game blackouts this season for the fifth consecutive year.” However, the "major takeaway" was that the "impact of playing a game in London" equates to 15% of the team’s local revenue. Khan: "Frankly, the (revenue) is more than we projected. Our local sponsor revenues are up 29 percent and a key reason we’re giving those sponsors exposure in London." Meanwhile, Lamping estimated that EverBank Field’s east and west side club section renovations would cost $15-20M and “remove seats in premium areas, which the Jaguars hope would increase the fan experience.” Lamping said of a roof, “It’s not in the near future” (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 5/14). O’Halloran notes the team's domestic revenues were down 9% “because the Jaguars played one fewer home game last year, but the overall local revenue was up” 8% “because of the London game impact.” The Jags' Union Jax fan club in the UK “has 22,802 members, up from 5,437” in April ’13. Meanwhile, the team will “have a 20th anniversary logo on the front of their jerseys for every game this year" (FLORIDA TIMES-UNION, 5/14).

JAGUARS' LOCAL REVENUES
'12
'13
Tickets
63%
Tickets*
48%
Sponsors
28%
U.K.
15%
Other
9%
Sponsorships
30%
,
Other
7%

NOTE: * = Includes "home" game played in London

THE COST OF WINNING? In Jacksonville, Gene Frenette wrote there is "no question the Jaguars made the right decision" financially to move one home game per year to London through the '16 season. It had to be done to "help repair a sagging bottom line." But Frenette asked, "Do the Jaguars continue to sacrifice a home game for financial gain, risking the possibility that losing a better homefield advantage at EverBank Field could conceivably cost them either an NFL playoff berth or a postseason bye?" Khan said, "I think we better see the kind of reception we get (in future games). Having one less home [game] helps the fans in Jacksonville (save money on season tickets). We want it to be good for the fans economically. It’s gotta be good for the NFL, too.” Frenette noted Lamping is “encouraged that the team’s popularity in the United Kingdom rose from 31st in the NFL to ninth last year after making that four-year commitment.” Revenue is "important" to the Jags, but they “can’t let that needed extra cash get in the way of the most important thing: winning” (JACKSONVILLE.com, 5/13). The AP noted the Jags' “somewhat somber state-of-the-franchise presentation” outlined the “small-market team’s problems and pitfalls” (AP, 5/14). In Florida, Will Brown notes Khan and Lamping “spent an hour revealing how the sausage is made when it comes to the franchise’s financials.” Lamping said that the franchise has the “second-most transient fan base, which is one reason why the club is expanding its focus beyond Duval County” (St. Augustine RECORD, 5/14).

AS FOR THAT OTHER FOOTBALL: The AP wrote Khan, who also owns EPL club Fulham, "expects a 'ground-up restoration' after being relegated" from EPL. Khan said, "It's unfortunate. It's not what we wanted, but it's reality. What we have to do is build it for the long haul.” The drop from the EPL is "expected to cost" Khan about US$60M annually in TV revenue. The club could “lose even more with reduced gate receipts.” Khan said that Fulham has “tradition, hard assets, no debt and great fan support.” He added that “every sponsor that had an option of re-signing for next season has done so, and others are lined up to join the franchise in southwest London” (AP, 5/13).

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