Bucks prep for year two in arena with new seating, ticket offers
The Milwaukee Bucks already are adding new seating areas and offering multiyear, season-ticket deals as they look to avoid a sophomore slump entering year two at Fiserv Forum.
The team has taken an aggressive selling strategy following one of the franchise’s most successful seasons both on and off the court. The Bucks posted the NBA’s best record during the inaugural season in their new arena and lost to the NBA champion Toronto Raptors in a six-game Eastern Conference Finals.
To ward off a drop in business that can occur the year after a team opens a new arena, the Bucks this offseason are selling new space in Fiserv Forum. Among them will be eight all-inclusive loge tables priced between $20,000 and $38,000 for the season and seating inside the Panorama Club with ticket pricing to be set within a few weeks. The team is also adding 26 more floor seats priced between $200 and $350 per game.
In addition the team began offering season-ticket holders two- and three-year extensions prior to hitting the market for the traditional season-ticket renewal offers. So far, about 1,300 season-ticket holders are in multiyear deals, which provide a 5% discount compared to one-year, single-season ticket buyers.
“We’ve heard about the sophomore slump,” said Jamie Morningstar, senior vice president of ticket sales for the Bucks. Despite the team’s success last season, she said, “We still had to be prepared.”
The Bucks to date have sold about 2,000 new full-season tickets for a 10,500 season-ticket base for the upcoming 2019-20 season. The team plans to sell a total of 11,300 season tickets, with the remaining inventory to be sold to groups and as single games inside the 17,500-seat Fiserv Forum. Year-over-year price increases for season tickets ranged between 5% and 20% depending on the seat location.
“Once we understood the success of the team and building, we made a conscious decision to go back to the market to reconsider two- and three-year deals for existing customers,” said Bucks President Peter Feigin. “We are in July and are pacing ahead of where we were a year ago going into a brand-new building. The team’s success is the accelerant. You don’t plan on it, but you are prepared for it.”
The Bucks also are looking to leverage the team’s success last season as they shop for a naming-rights sponsor for the entertainment plaza in front of the arena. The Bucks are shopping the deal themselves.
“We have three or four prospects and hope to have something done by the beginning of the season,” Feigin said.