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Where The Broncos Will Play 'Will Be Issue No. 1' On Walton Family's Plate

DENVER (CBS4) – The amount of money spent on the Denver Broncos will likely be a record for a bit, but the way things are going, another big sports team buy will exceed $4.65 billion. The Broncos selling price is taking valuations to new heights, but there may be good reason for it.

"$4.65 (billion) is a big number, but it is justified, absolutely," noted Kurt Badenhausen, a reporter for Sportico. "This is the first time we've seen a top 20 franchise in the world's richest sports league go on the market in more than a dozen years."

BRONCOS PRICE 10 PKG.transfer_frame_2320
(credit: CBS)

Badenhausen, until a year ago, was part of the reporting team at Forbes that began to price team values. The record amount Rob Walton, Carrie Walton Penner and Greg Penner will pay may turn out to be a good investment.

Wal-Mart Annual Shareholders Meeting
Rob Walton, chairman of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and son of founder Sam Walton, appears on stage during the annual shareholder meeting in Fayetteville, Arkansas, U.S., on Friday, June 3, 2011. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. renewed plans to buy back as much as $15 billion of its shares, potentially bolstering the Walton family's control of the world's largest retailer. (credit: Beth Hall/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

There are traditional revenue streams that are growing and new ones for NFL owners.

"The NFL is still the king of the jungle when you talk about TV, and they just signed $113 billion worth of new deals they've got coming in," said Badenhausen about a TV deal that runs to 2033. That is the big driver, but in addition to a favorable collective bargaining agreement approved in 2020.

But wait, there's more. The Broncos deal at Empower Field at Mile High has only nine years left, with two five-year options following. That means it's time to start thinking about where the Broncos will be.

"It's something you do have to look at right away if you're a new owner for sure. It will be very interesting," said Broncos President and CEO Joe Ellis at a springtime owners gathering in Florida. "But I think from the big picture business perspective, that will be issue number one on the next owner's plate."

Sports stadiums are not only places for eight to ten or so football games a year, but also becoming the centers of development. A bold pattern has been cut at SoFi stadium in Inglewood, California, the home of the Rams and Chargers by another Walmart family member (by marriage) in Stan Kroenke.

BRONCOS PRICE 10 PKG.transfer_frame_1316
(credit: CBS)

"If you're going to build a whole new city or mixed use development and then that's a totally different equation. You're talking about generating revenue significant revenue outside of the team that becomes a real estate project," said Badenhausen.

It's no secret the NFL is also looking at the potential of stepping into the profitable gambling side of sports. That is an entirely new area, and teams are now looking at what they can do with all the data they are collecting.

"Almost all of this information is being collected now by teams because it's all mobile ticketing. Because people are engaged on the website and buying tickets that way, and so, in the same way that Amazon uses that information to sell more to you, the NFL and all these sports leagues are doing that, as well."

All of it adds up to more revenue to cover the hefty price tag. The extended Walton family has figured out that owning teams in Denver is working out well for them and the Broncos, may be simply yet another.

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