Bong Cuevas, the proprietor of Nueva Ecija, longs for a “sustainable” MPBL

Oct 11, 2023

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From the outside, it appears that the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League is having a successful season.

MANILA, Philippines – The number of viewers, both online and on television, is at an all-time high, and practically every provincial game feature packed houses. The playoffs, the league’s most important phase, are about to start for the fifth season.

But what happens when the dazzling lights suddenly go out? What transpires if the league is not supported by a title sponsor?

It cannot merely be about utilizing Manny Pacquiao’s financial resources as league owner.

These are only a few of the issues that the league should address as soon as possible, including the issue of how it will remain viable.

The MPBL is still operated now in the same manner as when it was established in 2017. When the league ran the competition back then, teams paid a one-time franchise fee. Simple, right? How, then, can each team profit?

By the league’s sixth season the following year, franchise values are anticipated to have increased from P500,000 to somewhere around P50 million. Selling or renting out a franchise, however, is not a practical way to generate income. The entire implementation of ticket sales by each host hasn’t yet occurred. Most hosts want their venues to be crowded, and the only way to do so is to either sell tickets for a very low price or, most of the time, provide free seating.

What then makes a league viable? There are several options. Selling merchandise is one; unlocking sponsorships is another. A group of owners that are exclusively interested in seeing the MPBL succeed have come up with a few ideas, among others, that they have been discussing.

These are merely some concepts that some fervent team owners in the league are putting forth. the word “ideas”

And only if there is continuous communication between the league and its members can those novel plans be developed.

It won’t begin unless there is a board or management committee made up of league members.

Shared decision-making is a fantastic place to start, I agree.

The team owners are the only ones who have firsthand knowledge of the residents of those cities; nobody else does.

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