Arthur Blank Talks MLS Profitability, Aggressive Expansion
Atlanta United Owner Arthur Blank said that most MLS clubs are "profitable, which stands in contrast to what many league executives contend" amid ongoing CBA negotiations, according to Felipe Cardenas of THE ATHLETIC. Blank said MLS has "grown and yet maintained ... financial integrity and stability." He said, "The league continues to attract a higher level of investor that is willing to invest not only more money, but bring their business expertise, their sense of marketing and management to the league and to their own clubs. ... I couldn't be more excited about the direction of the league." Blank also said the league's expansion process has been "well thought out" and clubs/ownership groups are "highly vetted." Blank: "The quality of owners that are coming into the league is outstanding. And they're looking at it in a much broader sense." Blank added MLS is "well positioned for competitive growth." He said the league's current model "encourages" ambitious owners. However, he cautioned, "You don't want to turn the league over without any salary cap. Without any efforts to create a sense of competitive balance, where owners that are more well off than other owners -- let's say the owners of late, of the last four or five or six years -- where you put other teams that are owned by more traditional ownership, you don't want to put them at a competitive disadvantage. Their fans will lose interest. They won't attend games" (THEATHLETIC.com, 2/3).