Darren Rovell’s posted an entry on his CNBC blog regarding Boise State University move to offer “stock” in order to generate revenue for future athletic spending. Boise State, who are having a very successful football season (Ranked #6 in the BCS), also made headlines by hiring an outside PR firm to help its push into a BCS game. Here is Boise State’s press release on the stock offering.
Both of these moves are nothing new. Universities and athletic departments have hired PR firms to help sway voters in their push into BCS games or the BCS championship game. Offering stock is nothing new in sports. Rovell’s post mentioned the Green Bay Packers. I also believe the Boston Celtics, Cleveland Indians, Florida Panthers, and Vancouver Canucks have offered stock at some point in their histories.
By purchasing stock, “shareholders” receive a tax deduction and voting rights. What they are voting on, I am unsure. Shareholders do not get any other perks (tickets, priority seasting, etc). In addition, shareholders receive no dividends and the stock does not appreciate in value. It will be interesting to see how many shares are sold.
Personally, I do not see why consumers will be interested in this option. Most Division FBS schools allow consumers to donate to an athletic department scholarship fund in exchange for the right to purchase tickets and other amenities (including a tax deduction). Since the only advantage here is voting rights to determine how the money is used, I would think consumers would exchange voting rights for tickets.