Rights ownership was considered a key component of the TSE transformation strategy. We wanted to change the conversation about our business and use our ownership in a professional sporting team to showcase our capability and allow our staff to use their talents in an environment where we controlled the shots.
We also knew professional sports ownership would allow us the opportunity to work with more brands and that’s at the heart of our TSE business plans.
In 2018 we acquired a 50% stake in the Sydney Kings. The Kings were an iconic Sydney sporting team who were rebuilding under the ownership of AEG Ogden. Our challenge was to take the operational reins, improve revenue performance and utilise our marketing skills to grow the teams profile and popularity.
We understood basketball was Australia’s fastest growing sport and when Andrew Bogut joined the Kings he turbocharged the code’s profile and laid the foundation for TSE to leverage positive outcomes.
We drew on our years of sports industry experience to quickly establish simple objectives for the Kings:
To establish the Sydney Kings as Sydney’s number 1 summer sports team
To deliver the best at game experience in Australia
To clearly understand revenue streams and invest to drive targets
To create active fans. We know that passion builds advocacy & commercial objectives follow
To target audiences, invest in data, and curate the message to the audience to attract fan interest
In our first season with the Sydney Kings (NBL 2018/19 season), we produced results that we are proud of - laying a solid platform on which we intend to build a five year business plan.
We attracted the two biggest standalone crowds in franchise history, one of which was an NBL crowd record;
12,050 - December 23rd
14,569 - February 28th
Increased general ticket sales by 92% from 2017-18
Membership numbers grew more than 40% compared to 2017-18 season
Average attendance increased by greater than 2,500 per game from the 2017-18 season (6,320 to 8,932)
Overall revenue grew more than $3m
Sponsorship and corporate hospitality revenue grew more than $1m
We delivered the teams first ever Indigenous Round game
In April 2019, we acquired the remaining 50% of the Kings, a commitment that allows us complete autonomy and responsibility for the team’s future success.