The Brighton & Hove Albion model of signing exceptionally talented players on the cheap and then selling them at incredible markups is a sight to behold. The soccer world has been stunned with some of the club’s deals over the last few seasons, which have resulted in healthy profits.
When other teams like Manchester City and Chelsea are spending hundreds of millions on players, it’s refreshing to see Brighton succeeding with a different approach without having to rely solely on billionaire investment. Now, the south coast club should look to build on their recent success and add other revenue streams to ensure they can sustain this impressive ascent.
Brighton One of Few Clubs in Profit
Most of the clubs in the Premier League operate at a loss, often wagering investment from shareholders on transfers that they hope will yield returns in the form of trophies and high league finishes. It works for some sides, but many others end up in the relegation mire due to bad business. Just look at Leeds United, who recently gambled on several big-money transfers that didn’t pan out. Now, the Whites are back in the Championship, facing the Sisyphean task of clawing their way back out of it.
Brighton are one of the few clubs that have posted profits for the last three seasons. They’ve been able to do this through their shrewdness in the transfer market, and thanks to their refusal to be bullied into selling players. One of the most recent examples of this was with Moisés Caicedo, a player who the club was happy to keep unless their valuation was met. In the end, the much-lauded midfielder went to Chelsea for a whopping £100 million plus add-ons that could equate to an extra £15 million.
Club Should Now Seek to Add More Revenue Streams
This model of buying low and selling high is working for Brighton at the moment, but it may not last forever. Southampton and Leicester were once viewed as clubs with enviable business models, but those two sides have now slipped out of the top flight. Brighton should mitigate against this happening to them by exploring other revenue streams.
With Brighton playing exceptionally attacking and visually pleasing football under Roberto De Zerbi, it’s a prime opportunity to try to expand the global fan base. One way to do this would be through licensed games that showcase the star players. It’s a model that works well for television series and movies, so it could benefit football clubs as well.
Game of Thrones, for instance, had numerous related mobile and console games to expand its viewer base. As a legendary British club, Brighton could turn to a famous UK pastime for a boost. The online bingo industry is blowing up in the country, and there are plenty of football-themed games for players to choose from already. These include Football Cash Pots, Big Football Bonus, and Football! Cash Collect. If there was a Brighton-themed game, it could draw more fans to the club. The Seagulls could also look to increase their influence in other areas of gaming, perhaps by forging sponsorship deals with big brands in the eSports industry.
There’s no doubt that Brighton are in the ascendancy, but the question is whether they can break into the top four using their current model. It would make sense for them to capitalize on their recent success by adding some additional revenue streams now.
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