Now let me start off by saying that I believe that the current offer on season tickets at NUFC is exceptional.
Make no bones about it, it is unparalleled in terms of the Premier League and is something that no other club can match at the moment. Even I’m thinking of getting one!
The question I’m posing is whether or not it makes any sense. Yes there is a rather large and lengthly recession on at the moment and people may be feeling the pinch, but my business head is still crunching the numbers and searching for the answer to what seems to be an unanswerable question.
I say unanswerable because it simply goes against everything that the club seem to be about these days. While fans may be happy, ecstatic even, that they can get to see a game for less than £15 (or less that £3 if you’re a kid) it doesn’t exactly make any business sense. And with business being one of the buzz words at Newcastle right now I have to question the motive behind this.
To make my point I need to crunch some numbers, which I like doing thanks to a history of having to do it at various jobs in my past. Believe me I was never a fan of it at school, but how things change…
Anyway, say that the price, assuming that you partake of one of these cheap season tickets, is £15 per game. Then compare that with the average ticket price (including all categories) of £27 and you can see that there is quite the difference between selling a seat for a season and selling a seat on a per game basis.
In actual fact the club could effectively have one empty seat for every full seat on per game basis and still not lose out. In fact they would actually gain should attendances surge upwards, as they are doing right now in fact as witnessed by the 48,000+ crowd against Wigan at the weekend. If Wigan fans actually travelled in numbers then we could have easily broke the 50,000 barrier.
Losing out on money does not sound like the approach of either the club or Mike Ashley. It goes against everything that the club has done over the last few years and is a mismatch when compared against the business philosophy we’ve been told the club is being run by these days.
So with the business reason all but ruled out I can only think that there is one reason why this new initiative has been started – generosity.
This is not generosity in terms of getting something for nothing. Instead it’s a deal designed to reward those fans who have already parted with their hard earned and gives them a chance to bring their mates or family along to a match at a knockdown price. Given that the club would be no worse off for not doing this I can only think that the motive behind this is to make the stadium full once more, even if it means a potential loss of revenue for the club.
I really have to doff my cap to Mike Ashley and Derek Llambias on this one. They’ve done something outside of the box that no other club has even contemplated. They may have made some shocking calls in their time, but this is a move purely designed to benefit the fans. If you don’t believe that then crunch the numbers for yourself.
Now where is the catch?