THE NFL I$ A BU$INE$$!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The NFL is a biz and like all bizes, some succeed & some fail! It is also the case as with many bizes, that if early entrepreneurs maintain their ownership they will profit much, much more handsomely than later owners.  Hence “ceretis paribus” (everything being equal), owners who entered the league in the 30s, 40s & 50s are in a much better position to profit (increase the value of their ownership) than owners in the 80s, 90s & 00s. Here it is sports fans, the team with the greatest yearly growth rate is the Chicago Bears with an avg yearly % increase of 1,518,479,74% (based on a purchase price of $100 in 1920). WOW! Yes, an avg yearly increase in value of 1.5M+%. That’s right 1.5M+!!! worth of yearly increases from Halas’s $100 investment in 1920. “da Bears” remarkable increase is followed by the NYG, whose avg annual % growth is a measly 358,500%+. The next group of teams has a yearly avg growth % b/t 37,667% and 1,451+%, (In order they are PIT, TN [Originally the NY Titans], KC, BUF and then there are those beleaguered Oakland Raiders followed by AZ [started in CHI]). The 23 NFL remaining teams show growth %s from 86%+ per yr (SF) to the Dolphin’s avg growth from 2008-13 of 1.85%/per yr.


Forevermore, forevermore & forevermore, the Green Bay Indians or the Indian Packers (whatever they were called, 4 Score & 12 yrs ago) have been thorns in the sides of the Deccatur Staleys and their fans. The ONLY reason we have this info box is to detail the problems of honestly evaluating GB b/c it is a COMMUNITY OWNED team with a very, very checkered biz past. By comparison to the other NFL owners & bizes there is NO comparison! NFL owners are in this league b/c it’s the most prestigious  sports league in N America and it’s a bonanza! The crummy Buffalo Bills just sold for $1.4 B given a Forbes’ 2013 eval (published in 2014) of $0.935 B.  (That’s a meager 50% ABOVE Forbes’ aforementioned evaluation). So here comes the “small town” GB Packers who in late 1922 (b/c the team could NOT pay its obligations) decided to become publicly owned. So how absurd is this, a COMMUNITY OWNED NFL BIZ? As stated by Bloomberg Bizwk’s Karl Creenfield (2011), GB is “an immensely profitable company whose shareholders are forbidden by the corp bylaws (from receiving) a penny of that profit, (it is) a franchise that has flourished” despite having a population (now 104,000+) that is “more appropriate for a Triple A baseball team!” By our view it is “more appropriate” for a Double A team. Now we ask you, do the Packers really, really, really deserve to be in our table of BIG TIME BIZ OWNERS who pride/prize themselves in being an owner in the wealthiest and most successful sports league in the history of N Am? (C’mon you know the truth!) Even though the “Pack” have won more NFL championships than ANY other NFL franchise and have won 4 of 5 SB appearances, they should be but a footnote in our Biz Owners Table, right? Biz acumen our backsides! They should be but a FOOTNOTE!

Here’s how the story goes. The Indian Packing Co (in GB) gave employee and GB coach-owner-player Curly Lambeau $500 for uniforms in 1919 playing against WI & MI grade school girls’ teams. Then in 1921, GB joined the Am Pro Ftball Assn (NFL in 1922). At the end of ’21 season however, the league revoked the franchise b/c GB had used college players. The Packers pay a $50 fine to the league. GB was reinstated in 1922, The Chi Bears’ owner Geo Halas cancelled the GB vs CHI (THXGVNG) game in 1922 b/c GB was NOT able to meet the increased gate guarantee of $4,000. That was the beginning of the end of GB as a private sector biz. By the ‘23 season a nonprofit corp had been established that still exists 2day. WORTHLE$$ $TOCK$ were sold in 1950, 1958, 1997, etc. WORTHLE$$, WORTHLE$$, & WORTHLE$$!

Laura Saunders (WSJ) in 2012 stated that “It costs $250 a share, pays NO dividends, (gives) NO benefits from earnings, ISN’T tradeable and has NO securities law protection. AND buyers CAN’T get enough (of it)”. When GB sold stock in 1997 ONLY 120,000 of the 400,000 available shares were sold. Buyers “actually” got a paper certificate (to frame as a collectible?), a right to attend the annual meeting (where their voting power is insubstantial) AND the ability to buy shareholder ONLY merchandize (that must not be the magic). Oh, in case the team dissolved, “all profits and assets” must go to community programs and charities. Should GB be included in our table of evals? WADDUTHINK? By the way, we struggled whether to use $50 (the price of the aforementioned FINE for GB to be instated/re-instated in the league) as the purchase price or to use the $500 amount that the Indian Packing Co gave employee Curly Lambeau for team uniforms that was instrumental in awarding the Green Bay Indians a franchise as- the Packers were born” (see Curly Lambeau in Wikipedia). Did we mention that GB’s $TOCK IS WORTHLE$$?

As for the COMMUNITY OWNED GB Indian Packers (GBIP), their resource ineptitude has resulted in an avg yearly % growth in value of paltry 2.297M%. IT’s EZ for the GBIP to hide their devious biz incompetence behind a yearly avg % increase in value of 2.3M% (rounded up). INDEED! ANYQUESTIONS? GO BEARS!



About bernacmd

For over 24 years, University of Detroit Mercy Marketing Professor Michael Bernacchi, Ph.D., J.D, has produced "uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE", a newsletter discussing current "marketing and advertising¹s bends, trends & ends." A well-know fixture in Detroit and national media, UDM's marketing guru has made several appearances on CNN's "Talk Back Live," the Voice of America worldwide radio network (VOA), ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and on the pages of Sports Illustrated, Time, TV Guide, the New York Times, USA Today, the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, to name a few. At University of Detroit Mercy, he has taught courses in Marketing Management, Consumer Behavior, Marketing Communications, Research and Corporate Social Responsibility and Sports and Entertainment Marketing. Michael Bernacchi can be reached at 313-993-1116 or Please appropriately attribute the following for their work on uNDER tHE mIKE-rOSCOPE: Yen Ju Lee Robert Rouse Vidhyasagar Natarajan Eric Baumgardner & Ian Young
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