The numbers that I am seeing on here are light years past the ABA or even some D-League numbers.
I'm very curious.
Does anyone know what the Franchise Fee is?
The local media was initially willing to cover the Raptors, but the team has chosen to freeze out the only daily newspaper and the top two local radio stations in the county for reasons known only to them. I did sports PR work for a decade before getting into radio, and I guarantee that if the local media doesn't cover you, you're dead in the water...If you choose to not even TRY getting the local media to cover you, you're dead, period.
If you lived in Los Angeles, you will see the tiniest amount of print for the LA Galaxy soccer team. And they get 18,000 a game. In 20 pages of sports in the Times, you will see a quarter page at best. Do you think they are relying on the media to put people in the seats?
So cut that down to 5% and that's what the IBL are trying to get so to say without the media you're dead, well...
Don't buy it.
Marketing is more than saying, "Here we are...come and watch us," and I'm not seeing even that here. No doubt part of the season you see decent attendance figures in Elkhart and Santa Barbara is that those teams are actively reaching out to people in their communities. Comparing the LA Galaxy with the Lewis County Raptors is an apples-vs-oranges argument. Los Angeles is a little bit larger than Lewis County (population 70,000), and the Raptors don't have a David Beckham on their roster.
The IBL has a very good blueprint in place that gives its franchises a chance to make it financially by not burdening them with heavy travel expenses (which can be a killer) and keeping the scheduling centered on a regional basis. But, as in any sport, you have to have people who know what they're doing running teams and you have to be in markets that will support those teams.
The halfway point between Portland and Seattle is Centralia. That's in Lewis County, and that's where the Raptors are supposedly based. (If they farm out any more games to the REALLY small towns further along, I'll have to change that assessment)
There are about 70,000 people in Lewis County. Centralia, which is the largest town in Lewis County (about 13,000) is 20-25 miles south of Olympia on I-5. The Raptors are based there and play some home games at the local community college gym. However, their home schedule also includes games in Morton (a town of about 1,000 in East Lewis County), Winlock (another town of 1,000 or so south of Centralia) and Oakville (a TINY little town of around 500 that actually sits on the Thurston-Grays Harbor County line not too far from Centralia).
To add to the question about IBL franchise fees, $23K sounds about right, and I think the league gives you a fair amount of time (2 or 3 years?) to pay it off so you can use revenues to help build your team in the interim. As I've said, this league has a really good economic model that gives its teams a chance to survive. If I were to own a minor league basketball team (heaven help us), I'd rather take my chances in the IBL than the others.