This report analyses the commercial future of the Oakland Raiders as the National Football League (NFL) franchise relocates to Las Vegas for either the 2019 or 2020 season. Las Vegas offers many opportunities, from increasing stadium-based revenues, re-thinking commercial partnership options within the travel industry and elsewhere, and in the longer term providing a channel to further grow both the team and sport internationally, and develop a larger global fan base.
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Analysis of the relocation of the Oakland Raiders NFL franchise from Oakland, California to Las Vegas, Nevada. This involves assessing commercial opportunities across various revenue streams, while highlighting the broader options that Las Vegas can offer the franchise, and the league. The report will focus on four main areas that will ultimately determine the viability and long-term success of the planned move.
The Raiders are a long-established nomadic NFL franchise. The most recent season, Raiders’ 57th in total and 23rd since returning to Oakland from Los Angeles, was a successful outing. A 12-4 record represented a notable improvement on the previous season that saw their campaign finish with an unimpressive seven wins and nine losses.
The expiration of the Raiders’ lease on the Oakland Alameda Coliseum, the home of the franchise for nearly 20 years, opened the door to new negotiations. Following several seasons of year-to-year leases, stadium negotiations with the city of Oakland, California, proved unsuccessful.
In terms of stadium capacity, the Alameda Coliseum finished bottom of the league, with 5,437 fewer seats than the second smallest, Soldier Field, home of the Chicago Bears, and 37,333 seats less than the largest, AT&T Stadium, home of the Dallas Cowboys. This illustrates the urgency with which the Raiders have sought to relocate following the failed negotiations.
If the Raiders’ potential is to be fully realised, the franchise needs a new place to call home.