research resources for starting a sports team/franchise


I'm thinking of starting up a minor sports team in the world of e-sports and I'd like to model it after the more well-known models in hockey and football.

I've tried going to the official websites for these industries, and there is no public information on how this stuff is modeled.

My goal right now is to find out how pro-league teams model their revenue and compensation structure, and then tweak it for the games/leagues my team would participate in.


(there's no existing tag for sports so I couldn't add it)

Business Model Research Team

asked Feb 14 '12 at 06:39
234 points
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  • what are e sports? – Tim J 12 years ago
  • Organized video games - tournaments and leagues that play for large purses. Some can go as high at $5M USD, but most are between 1 and 100 thousand for first place. – Patrickgamer 12 years ago
  • OK thanks - the "sports" moniker threw me - to me that is video gaming/gaming. – Tim J 12 years ago
  • I'm just using the nomenclature adopted by the tournaments and organizations themselves. I was hoping doing so would make it more clear, not less :) – Patrickgamer 12 years ago
  • Sure - but it is kind of presumptive of them to use that name - it's not a sport - and maybe your title should say e-sport - not sports team – Tim J 12 years ago
  • Well, they air Poker on TSN - and the eye-hand coordination has been compared to golf and gun-sports. Regardless the goal of my question is to decern how I can better understand sports team management, and model my team operations after that of pro hockey, baseball, or football teams. – Patrickgamer 12 years ago

1 Answer


Identify who would buy one of your franchisees and model it so it appeals to them. You may want the to "feel" like they're part of the big leagues, but you don't have to follow the model that close.

The pro sports model caters to people who have and/or can borrow large sums of money. TV contracts guarantee a certain amount of revenue; you may not have that luxury. Physical location limits may not be something you need to worry about unless you want to boost local interest by attaching a franchise to a city.

Key areas of an agreement cover:

  • Ownership and Transfer of ownership rules
  • Fees: upfront, on-going, and percentage of revenue
  • Territory:

  • Length of Contract and cost to renew
  • Expectations: how much marketing or other activities required
  • Providing Training and support
  • Behaviors that can get a franchisee kicked-out (There has to be a better term for this.).

Different States in the US have their own laws and registration requirements. I don't know if this applies to you, but it is specific to where the owner resides and not where they do businesss.

answered Feb 14 '12 at 11:31
Jeff O
6,169 points
  • Thanks Jeff, but I'm looking to start a sports team, not a sports league. The catch is that the league is not organized, nor is it franchised. Still, I'm combing through your notes trying to imagine in from the perspective of team owner vs. players. Thanks – Patrickgamer 12 years ago

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