‘Sports franchises are how we knight people in this country’, said Billions character Sanford Bensinger about the United States. There’s a lot of truth to this quote; 43 members of the 2021 Forbes 400 list own a controlling interest in major sports teams, with a combined wealth of US$389b.
It’s not just for vanity. The global sports market was valued at US$355b in 2021, and The Business Research Company estimates it will grow to US$708b by 2026.
Want a piece of the sports pie, but you’re not a billionaire (yet)? Some of the world’s largest sports franchises are publicly traded. Generally, these franchises are offered through two methods: direct and indirect.
An example of direct investment is the English soccer club Manchester United FC (NYSE: MANU), which Elon Musk recently ‘joked’ he was buying. Another example is Italy’s Serie A soccer franchise Juventus FC, available on Wall St’s OTC exchange (and for Stake Black members) under the ticker JVTSF.
The New York Knicks, New York Rangers, Atlanta Braves and Toronto Blue Jays are examples of indirect investment opportunities. These sports franchises are owned, in part or wholly, by publicly traded companies you can invest in. The New York Knicks and Rangers are owned by Madison Square Garden Sports (NYSE: MSGS), and Rogers Communications (NYSE: RCI) has controlled the Toronto Blue Jays since 2000. Both companies have other significant assets, so you are owning more than just a sports team by buying in.
In the 21st century, sports franchise ownership is more democratised than ever. Just keep in mind that the financial success of a franchise is related to many factors other than the team’s performance..