SBJ/August 7 - 13, 2000/No Topic Name

Insuring teams’ stars not a novel concept

The article "Cards hedge bet on Big Mac's health" [June 19] stated: "Historically, underwriters haven't insured teams against lost revenue based on star players because it was difficult to quantify how much revenue a single player generates." I respectfully disagree.

For many years now, BWD Group LLC has been securing "asset value" insurance for teams, leagues and athletes in the form of disability insurance, accidental death and dismemberment insurance, life insurance and many other products. BWD has worked closely with many professional team and league executives as well as sports insurance underwriters to determine the financial impact should a star athlete die or suffer a disability. This analysis has included the revenue generated from gate receipts, TV and radio advertising and other forms of revenue.

The Cardinals are not "the sole big league franchise to buy the coverage," nor is it a novel concept. Substantial claims under these types of policies have already been paid to major league teams who lost star players due to disability or death, as well as to players who have protected themselves against loss of future earnings due to a career-ending injury or death.

Contrary to your article, it is not difficult to substantiate a star player's future worth to a franchise or to the player himself. We recognized long ago that if a star player suffers a disability, the team may lose significant revenue from advertising and merchandising, future ticket sales and playoff games missed. The player's family loses the player's earning potential from future contracts and endorsement deals. This is precisely why a sports insurance brokerage firm like BWD has been recommending and placing asset value insurance for teams and players for decades.

Leigh A. Edgar
Jericho, N.Y

Leigh A. Edgar is vice president of BWD Group LLC..

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