Patriots' Jonathan Kraft Discusses Team's Evolution, Brand Strategy
Patriots President Jonathan Kraft said that the introduction of the NFL's salary cap in '94 "influenced his father," Robert Kraft, to purchase the team the same year for $172M, according to Nicole Yang of BOSTON.com. Jonathan Kraft, speaking Monday at Forbes' "Under 30 Summit," said that with the salary cap in place, there was "less emphasis on who could out-spend the competition and greater focus" on what he called “traditional, strategic operating principles of a business.” Kraft said the reason his family was "willing to pay up so much for a business that was negative $6 million in EBITA and didn’t have a lot going for it was because we loved the competition" of the NFL. He said they "believed that with a hard salary cap, the teams that were going to be successful were teams that understood how to evaluate talent, sign it up under the rules of the cap, and then coach it well.” Kraft said the Patriots "upped their roster of season-ticket holders from 19,000 to 50,000 for the ’94 season," and from "then on, the Patriots established a paid waiting list, which Kraft said currently carries approximately 80,000 people." Kraft also noted sponsors "receive the same care as season-ticket holders." He said, "This isn’t just eight home games a year with your sign up on the wall. It’s a 365-day-a-year association with our brand, with our players, (and) with our family. We’ll work with you in a whole host of ways to help give your brand a platform that it wouldn’t otherwise have had" (BOSTON.com, 10/2).