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Buying a minor league hockey team?

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04-08-2012, 02:27 PM
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WingsFan95
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Buying a minor league hockey team?

Google was no help at looking up minor league hockey costs for teams, only player salaries.

This stems from the "what if" scenario of HF Boards having a team.

Before you go and call me a lunatic, many large groups have bought businesses.

A partnership of 10,000 people collectively buying something isn't new.

So I'm curious as to the realistic finances of buying minor league teams by large group of investors.

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04-08-2012, 02:36 PM
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Dado
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A few of us here have, from time to time, discussed the costs of buying and running a minor league team. You can get into the ECHL for around $750k, and it costs about $1M/year to run the team. AHL appears to start at roughly 2x that.

It's certainly doable, for someone with the passion to make it happen.

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04-08-2012, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Dado View Post
A few of us here have, from time to time, discussed the costs of buying and running a minor league team. You can get into the ECHL for around $750k, and it costs about $1M/year to run the team. AHL appears to start at roughly 2x that.

It's certainly doable, for someone with the passion to make it happen.
$250x5,000 people is $1.25 Million.

Let's say we have 25,000 members who post somewhat frequently.

Would it be out of the realm of plausibility to consider 20% of those have $250 a year to put into stock for a minor league team?

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04-08-2012, 03:40 PM
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This reminds me of myfootballclub.com.

Someone started a site and ended up raising the funds for the site and it's members to collectively buy Ebbsfleet United, a conference side.

The first year was largely successful, but a majority of members didn't renew for the second season.

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04-08-2012, 03:43 PM
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WingsMike
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This might be a reach, but certainly pretty cool. I'd definitely be willing to help out if something is put together.

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04-08-2012, 05:57 PM
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We would need to find suitable management and location for a said hockey team. the cost might be more in the 2-3 m$ for the first operating year.

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04-08-2012, 07:24 PM
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Dibbs on being Chairman.

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04-08-2012, 08:27 PM
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Dibs on being the logo

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04-08-2012, 08:36 PM
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MurrayBannerman
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I would be in pretty seriously on this one though. I think we'd have to go through some capital assuring measures though such as overshooting our goal for the first season and starting renewals quickly after establishing the franchise.

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04-08-2012, 10:26 PM
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The biggest issue with group ownership is the financial core.

You'd need reliable people overseeing the funding, otherwise the money could easily be misappropriated.


Ideally, I think this would start with ten or so main members who would setup the accounts, etc and put in about 100-200k.

All most likely in one city.

Then they'd pitch it to HFboards and see how many people jump on board as part owners.

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04-08-2012, 10:26 PM
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kaiser matias
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Isn't there a website someone posted a while back that is trying to get enough people to pledge some small number ($100 or so) in order to buy MLSE or just the Leafs? I remember the discussion about it, and the issues that it would raise in having like 1 million people owning a sports team.

Edit:

Found the site: http://owntheleafs.ca/

Guy wants 1 million people to pledge $1000 to raise $1 billion to buy MLSE. Founded around March 2011, and got attention a month later.


Last edited by kaiser matias: 04-08-2012 at 10:29 PM. Reason: Found the site
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04-08-2012, 10:47 PM
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Dibs on being the logo
Dibs on being goalie and head coach

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04-08-2012, 10:53 PM
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More than a million people own a piece of Apple.

It's not really a unique situation.

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04-08-2012, 10:55 PM
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Not going to lie, if I was a multimillionaire, I'd seriously consider it (along with bringing a minor league or independent league baseball team to my hometown of Champaign-Urbana).

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04-08-2012, 11:11 PM
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Location of a said team would be an issue, I'm pretty sure most of this forum member would be scattered all around North America, maybe finding out which minor-junior or senior teams in financial troubles would be the first step.

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04-08-2012, 11:33 PM
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MurrayBannerman
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Not going to lie, if I was a multimillionaire, I'd seriously consider it (along with bringing a minor league or independent league baseball team to my hometown of Champaign-Urbana).
The Northwest Indiana area could definitely support a team, in my opinion.

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04-09-2012, 12:10 AM
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The Northwest Indiana area could definitely support a team, in my opinion.
[IMG]http://content.****************/logos/89/2681/full/egl98gvb68fkh14zazjdtnee0.gif[/IMG]

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04-09-2012, 12:23 AM
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MurrayBannerman
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[IMG]http://content.****************/logos/89/2681/full/egl98gvb68fkh14zazjdtnee0.gif[/IMG]
We are not putting a team in Gary.

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04-09-2012, 12:40 AM
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Let's put back an ECHL team in New Orleans.

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04-09-2012, 01:46 AM
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We are not putting a team in Gary.
I was just saying you already have a team.

Unless you mean a hockey team. Don't think that would work in the 219. Wolves are too strong all around here.

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04-09-2012, 06:59 AM
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I was just saying you already have a team.

Unless you mean a hockey team. Don't think that would work in the 219. Wolves are too strong all around here.
Not going to lie, I've gotten the vibe people have gotten a little wary of going to that area for cheap baseball lately.

I haven't got that feeling at all, and most of the people who do like the Wolves just do because they're cheap. Cut the travel costs by 95% and you've got yourself a nice fan base. You could probably include the south siders too.

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04-09-2012, 11:27 AM
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The larger problem by far is keeping 5,000 people interested in covering annual operating costs. Though there might be some unique marketing and sponsorship opportunities to lighten the burden.

IMO, a more realistic way to do this would be to find a franchise with cash-flow issues and get the current owner to agree to sell a 51% stake. That way you only spend half as much and ownership decisions might be a little more focused and... um... smart.

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04-09-2012, 11:52 AM
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Loving that Rail Cats logo!

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04-09-2012, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by MurrayBannerman View Post
Not going to lie, I've gotten the vibe people have gotten a little wary of going to that area for cheap baseball lately.

I haven't got that feeling at all, and most of the people who do like the Wolves just do because they're cheap. Cut the travel costs by 95% and you've got yourself a nice fan base. You could probably include the south siders too.
I've never been to the Steel Yard, but driving by it a few times it doesn't seem to be in that bad of area. I could be wrong.

As for another hockey team, there just isn't a need for a 3rd team, as the Express have shown. People don't want to spend the same amount to see 'AA' when they can see 'AAA' in Rosemont.


Last edited by IU Hawks fan: 04-09-2012 at 01:20 PM.
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04-09-2012, 02:25 PM
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The Rail Cats actually draw fairly well, and their ballpark is a major staple of the Gary community, so they're doing just fine.

Then again, I worked for the Schaumburg Flyers for a season (aka, one of the two reasons why the Northern League collapsed, the other being the Lake County Fielders, who were owned by the same dude), so my views of other independent teams might be a big slanted.

And if I were being completely honest, if I did own the rights to an AHL or ECHL franchise and wanted to stay in the general midwest area, I'd probably look long and hard and the Indianapolis market. You'd have to get rid of the Ice, as I doubt that two teams could be sustainable there, but honestly always thought that Indy, being a downright fantastic minor league town already, would actually be a great fit for either league if done right, the fact that it's already oversaturated as a pro sports market notwithstanding.

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