How to Start a Professional Sports Franchise

Cities or metropolitan areas that are homes to sports franchises often see many positive results. Revenue figures rise, new businesses related to the sports franchise locate or re-locate to the area, and the population numbers increase as people move closer to the area to take advantage of the sports franchise.

Starting a sports franchise does involve having a substantial amount of readily-available funds; however, a return on the investment is often seen within a very short time.

Determine at the very beginning what would most likely work, what might work, and what would most likely not work. Take into consideration such things as the climate during the main season in which the sport would be played, the location of arenas or venues, and, of course, the part of the country in which you are located.

Decide which sports franchise you would like to purchase, and check for availability. (See Tips for more information)

Do as much as you can to prepare for the franchise before the actual purchase. This may include:

advertising or otherwise making known your intention to purchase and locate a sports franchise in your area, and holding public meetings, forums, or other necessary gatherings to present information, hear opinions and concerns, and other things of a similar nature.

obtaining permission, business licenses and permits, and other documentation from local governments who will or could possibly be affected.

assuring that an arena or venue is or will be available and ready for immediate occupation and operation once the franchise is purchased and the season is ready to begin.

Determine the exact amount of “liquid capital” (see Things You Need section) that you will need, and make sure it will be available when you are definitely ready to pay.

Make necessary financial arrangements to ensure that funds will be available at the initial inception and during the first few months after the franchise purchase.

Purchase the franchise you have chosen by paying the “liquid capital” and prepare to start business.


Remember that the term “sports franchise” encompasses more than just professional sports teams, although they are without a doubt the most lucrative franchises. However, youth and children’s soccer, baseball, or other similar leagues are also considered sports franchises.

Some franchises are always looking for new investors; others are currently not accepting new investors; therefore, you may want to consider several so that if one is not available, you can choose another.

If a sports arena or venue is already present, and can be used for multiple functions, this can save money. Or, the presence of two professional sports franchises, if this is case, may be the incentive for a proposal to build a new sports complex.

Get as many people, companies, and organizations involved as you can. This will not only provide additional funding, but will also make everyone feel like they had a part in it, even if you did all or most of the work to make it happen.


Do not use unethical or illegal methods to accomplish your goal of starting a professional sports franchise. Civil or criminal penalties can result when the infractions are revealed (and you can be sure they will be.)

Make sure everyone will benefit from your starting a professional sports franchise. If starting the franchise means that people or businesses will be displaced, and little or no assistance will be given to help with relocation or restructure, then you may want to consider making changes that will prevent this from happening.

Make sure your financial security and future will not be affected should the franchise fail completely or take some time to show a profit. No franchise is worth putting you and your family’s financial status in jeopardy.