The annual Forbes baseball team valuations are out, and it makes for a fun read each year (so long as you remember the proper perspective: these are best available estimates, and the way various financial figures are calculated might be different than you’d expect or use colloquially).
The Chicago Cubs are valued at $2.2 billion, a dramatic increase over last year’s $1.8 billion figure, and an enormous increase over the approximately $845 million purchase price for the Ricketts Family in 2009. At a risky time to make extravagant purchases, the deal proved to be a wise investment. You could say that even purely from a business perspective, as sports team valuations rocketed northward from there, thanks in large part to skyrocketing TV rights contracts. The Cubs haven’t yet cashed in on theirs – their current deals run through 2019 – but it’s coming.
The Cubs’ $2.2 billion valuation is fifth highest in baseball, according to Forbes, behind only the Yankees ($3.4 billion), Dodgers ($2.5 billion), Red Sox ($2.3 billion), and Giants ($2.25 billion).
With a competitive horizon that stretches for a while, with a new TV deal that should be coming in the next few years, and with ticket revenue set to explode next year (thanks both to increased attendance and a 10% bump in ticket prices), things are looking bright for the owners of the Chicago Cubs.
And, as long as that translates to having the funds available to put a competitive product on the field, Cubs fans can bask in the reflected glow.