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Inside the Forbes 2011 NHL Valuations PDF Print E-mail
NHL News
Written by Maury Brown   
Wednesday, 30 November 2011 21:37

NHLAccording to their annual report of the 30 clubs in the NHL (see www.forbes.com/nhl), the average value for a club in the league now is at $240 million, up 5% from last year, ranging as high as over a half-a-billion dollars for the Maple Leafs ($521 million) to $134 million for the beleaguered Phoenix Coyotes. Based upon totals from Forbes, total franchise value for all 30 clubs is $7.198 billion with revenues that came to $3.09 billion for the 2009-10 season.

More than half the league reportedly saw revenues over $100 million with the Maple Leafs nearing the $200 million mark ($193 million). The Rangers, now playing in a refurbished MSG, saw $41.4 million last year and are the NHL’s second-most valuable team, worth $507 million The Islanders, who continue to struggle in their efforts to construct a new arena, had the league’s lowest revenues at $63 million.

In terms of profits and losses, according to Forbes, the league saw a decline operating income, a form of profit (Operating Income is earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization - EBITA). Collectively, the league saw a 21% decline in operating income from the 2008-09 season. All told, 18 of the 30 clubs are shown to be running in the red compared to 16 in the Forbes report last year. But, the 21% declined is skewed primarily by two clubs: Coyotes and Blue Jackets. The Coyotes, who continue to struggle in Phoenix and have been relocation fodder is shown to have lost $24.4 million while Columbus shows a $13.7 million loss. They are the only two clubs with losses in double-digits with the Lightening coming in a very distant third in the loss department at losses of $8.5 million.

In a matter that is sure to come to the bargaining table for a new CBA in the NHL, Forbes attributes losses to player payroll. From Ozanian and Badenhausen:

The league’s salary cap, set at 57% of revenue, is too high for some teams to be profitable . As a result, expect the National Hockey League to undergo a cantankerous labor negotiations when the owners and players union begin to hammer our a new collective bargaining agreement to replace the current six-year deal that expires in September . The NHL must move much closer to the 48% model the NFL agreed to before this season or the 50-50 revenue split National Basketball Association owners and players recently agreed to.

In terms of massive profits, the Maple Leafs (once again) top the Forbes valuations in profit. The club pulled in $81.8 million in operating income for the 2009-10 season. To place that in perspective, that’s $34.1 million more than the second ranked by operating income, the Montreal Canadians. The average for operating income for the NHL is shown at $4 million, but that’s deceptive. Clubs running at a profit averaged $21.1 million while the average for those running at a loss was -$7.1 million. The six clubs with double-digit operating income (Maple Leafs, Rangers, Canadians, Red Wings, Canucks, and Oilers) totaled $228 million.

Of deep concern has to be Devils and to a lesser extent, the Stars. While Dallas is in the throes of a bankruptcy sale, the Devils are drowning in debt. According to Forbes, New Jersey has a monstrous Debt to Value of 144%. They see a one-year valuation change of -17%. The Stars come in at 126%. The Rangers, Red Wings, and Blackhawks are the only clubs not carrying debt.

In terms of increases and decreases in value, overall the league saw a 5% increase in club value. Seven clubs see declines (Devils, Blues, Flyers, Panthers, Ducks, Blue Jackets, and Islanders), two clubs (Coyotes and Avalanche) remained flat, while the rest of the league all saw gains with the largest being the recently relocated Jets at 21% (NOTE: Forbes informs that while the rest of the valuation numbers are based off of the 2009-10 season, the valuations are based on current data. Therefore, the Jets increase in value is due in large part from the relocation from Atlanta to Winnipeg and therefore, is reflected in the large increase in one-year value increase). Coming in second is the Tampa Bay Lightening at 20%. Seven clubs saw double-digit percentage increases in their values (Jets/Thrashers, Lightening, Canucks, Penguins, Oilers, Capitals, and Predators).

Overall, the NHL continues to make inroads at the league level in terms of sponsorships and fan growth through the popular Bridgestone Winter Classic.

SELECT READ MORE TO SEE THE FORBES NHL VALUATIONS

Rk

Team

Current Val
($mil)

1-Yr Val
Chg (%)

Debt/Value
(%)

Revs
($mil)

Op Inc
($mil)

1

Toronto Maple Leafs

521

3

25

193

81.8

2

New York Rangers

507

10

0

169

41.4

3

Montreal Canadiens

445

9

65

165

47.7

4

Detroit Red Wings

336

7

0

127

16.3

5

Boston Bruins

325

8

35

125

2.7

6

Chicago Blackhawks

306

2

0

118

8.7

7

Vancouver Canucks

300

15

37

146

23.5

8

Philadelphia Flyers

290

-4

22

111

3.2

9

Pittsburgh Penguins

264

12

38

110

-0.2

10

Los Angeles Kings

232

8

66

101

-2.0

11

Dallas Stars

230

1

126

90

-1.1

12

Washington Capitals

225

14

58

94

-7.5

13

Calgary Flames

220

7

15

105

1.1

14

Minnesota Wild

213

5

53

97

-5.9

15

Edmonton Oilers

212

16

47

96

17.3

16

San Jose Sharks

211

9

21

96

-7.8

17

Ottawa Senators

201

3

65

100

2.8

18

Colorado Avalanche

198

0

12

83

6.1

19

Anaheim Ducks

184

-2

35

84

-8.4

20

New Jersey Devils

181

-17

144

100

-6.1

21

Tampa Bay Lightning

174

20

26

87

-8.5

22

Buffalo Sabres

173

2

46

87

-5.6

23

Carolina Hurricanes

169

4

77

81

-4.4

24

Winnipeg Jets

164

21

61

71

-5.2

25

Nashville Predators

163

10

52

82

-7.5

26

Florida Panthers

162

-4

59

81

-7.0

27

St Louis Blues

157

-5

81

78

-2.7

28

Columbus Blue Jackets

152

-1

66

80

-13.7

29

New York Islanders

149

-1

67

63

-8.1

30

Phoenix Coyotes

134

0

26

70

-24.4

Source: Forbes


Maury BrownMaury Brown is the Founder and President of the Business of Sports Network, which includes The Biz of Baseball, The Biz of Football, The Biz of Basketball and The Biz of Hockey, and is a contributor to Forbes SportsMoney blog.. He is available as a freelance writer. Brown's full bio is here. He looks forward to your comments via email and can be contacted through the Business of Sports Network (select his name in the dropdown provided).

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