Chicago Sun-Times

Updated: Bears raise ticket prices

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Missing the playoffs for three straight seasons won't prevent the Bears from raising ticket prices.

On a day when Tiger Woods' much anticipated nationally broadcast mea culpa was sure to dominate the news, the Bears announced that most ticket prices at Soldier Field will be increased for the 2010 season.

Club seats will be raised from $10 to $20. Non-club seat increases range from $2 to $17 and now range from $68 to $125.

"Last year when we went through the process and decided not to raise ticket prices due to the unprecedented economic downturn, I know in the city we were the first team to do that. It was the right thing to do," team president Ted Phillips said in a conference call with three Chicago-area reporters.

"The reality now is that the biggest goal we have financially is we have to remain economically competitive with others teams in the league with the goal of building a championship team, obviously. Given the fact that we have the smallest stadium capacity in the league, we pay one of if not the highest amusement tax of any team --- we pay 12 percent combined city/county amusement tax --- just to keep our ticket revenues in the middle of the pack more often than not we're going to have to increase most of the ticket prices every year. I think that's been shown since we opened the building. I think every year except for last year we did increase prices.

"Do we like it? No. We do do our best trying to balance the economics of being competitive while at the same time being sensitive to our season ticket holders by adding more value."

I asked Phillips if the level of fan dissatisfaction and lack of confidence in the management and coaching staff makes the ticket hike tougher to sell.

"Anytime you have a losing year you're going to get some negativity given the passion of our fans. I get that," he said. "The reality is --- I'm hopeful --- the moves we made this offeason will be viewed as positive. I know internally we feel real good about it. We feel good about the process of hiring a new offensive coordinator. I feel good about the process of having a guy like Rod Marinelli as the defensive coordinator. From a fan perspective, until it gets translated into winning games there will be doubters. But right now, from the things I've heard, when you listen to Mike Martz talk publically he gives fans legitimate reason for hope and we're excited about it."

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Total BULL. Put a quality product on the field and the fans might be willing to raise prices. This garbage heap needs to be cleaned from top to bottom.

Yes! Gorgeous money! More, more I need more!

And who cares if the last three seasons were garbage? You stupid drunks will all come running back to Soldier Field when September rolls around yelling "Go Bears!" like it means something. Oh but it does for me, it means CA$H-OLA!

I'll get you my pretty! And you're little dog too! AHAHAHAH!!

You insufferable bean-counting puppet! You're rapidly becoming the Detroit Lions and you & the McCASHkeys once again have the sheer audacity to raise ticket prices. Consider me out.

Thats just rediculous!

I totaly agree with you Fred. However someone like Creighton probably thinks its worth it just because Jay Cutler is on the field.

Wont be openiing my wallet for the mccaskeys nope nope.

Maybe give the players a paycut so that their devoted fans will keep filling your stadium and give us a break!!

If you gotta raise ticket prices you have to raise them. Just don't go blowing smoke up everyone's a##. In the Bears case they don't actually need to raise them, they need to win and watch their revenue go up.

According to Forbes the Bears have one of the leanest operations in the nfl, he may not like his 12% tax, but he fails to mention they have one of the best stadium deals in all the nfl. You know like the fans paid for most it. Sarcasim aside they actually do have pretty much the best deal in the nfl.

"The team pays $5.7 million a season in rent and gets all football-related revenue at Soldier Field."

They don't share revenue with the city like most teams do. So they have a really good deal even with the tax.

The Bears are also not middle of the pack in gate reciepts. At 57 million, 35 million comming from premium seating, the bears are doing really well. Thats the same as the Giants. The difference is the Bears actually get to keep more of that money than most teams.

While a lot of the Bears numbers are middle of the pack, because of their deal with Chicago they actually come out on top.

I don't mind them raising the ticket prices, many teams charge more than the Bears, just skip all the other BS. Their own revenue would be hire if they won more games. Fact is the McCaskey family makes a fortune every year and thats according to Forbes.

Two quotes from Forbes.(2007)
"Though Philips is known for focusing on costs, ticket prices at the new Soldier Field are currently second highest in the league behind only the New England Patriots. But the team does not generate sufficient revenue given its big market, great stadium deal and famous brand." This was after 2007. That means they are only hitting about 20 percent of their target audience.

The Teams revenue consistantly goes up but has not taken any huge leaps. While revenue has gone up, operating income has actually dropped for the Bears, over 10 million dollars over the last 3 years. However the Bears TRPS has dropped from 211(2007) to 98(2009), which is really bad, that means people are not watching them as much. This is where they take their big hit.

This is pre 2009. Forbes.
"The Bears have one of the best stadium deals in the NFL. The team pays $5.7 million a season in rent and gets all football-related revenue at Soldier Field. A big plus for the Bears: $35 million a season from premium seating. The Bears also have one of the leanest operations in the NFL, a tradition that started with the team's founder, George Halas. As a result, the team should still make a fortune this season despite not increasing ticket prices."

Basically if they win, they will do a lot better and won't need to raise ticket prices so much. Do they need to raise ticket prices to be competative. Not really, they need to be competative on the field to be competative. Winning teams always make more money.

Brando you couldn't afford the tickets to begin with, they don't take bottlecaps. Besides yo uwer banned from the stadium for stalking the love of your life Jerry Angelo.

Been a fan a long time.. this team has hit an all time low. A lame duck coach, an idiot GM, an owner who cares for nothing more then $$$$$.. HEY BEARS... figure it out. The cost for a family of 4 to go to "ONE" game is what.. $300.00?? after tickets/parking and an 8 dollar hot dog??? And this CBA issue? Teams are hurting for money I saw on the internet?? Really.. anyone know what the NFL Commish makes a year... check it out.. millions... per year. This is garbage. Glad Im still able to watch the Hawks. They may not win the Cup, but at least the organization is committed to winning. Im going to mail my jersey/hat and the rest of the crap to Virgina. Im sure she can sew a new name on it and hand it out to whatever garbage BS free agent JA signs. What a shame. A core NFL team and its a circus. Crap team... horrible coach/GM.. the worst owners in the NFL.. and you raise ticket prices?? Good for you Virginia...

"I know internally we feel real good about it. We feel good about the process of hiring a new offensive coordinator. I feel good about the process of having a guy like Rod Marinelli as the defensive coordinator."

I love it! The guy who promised massive change feels real good about how little they've actually accomplished.

I commented on the previous story about the Bears getting the idiot from Seattle that I couldn't imagine how they could make things even worse, but that I had full confidence that they'd show me. Well, here it is. I don't live in Chicago anymore, but I used to go to all the games when I did, except for awhile when a bunch of us stopped going after Abe Gibron made it so embarrassing to be there. But I'd sure stop going now. Sheesh, what a hopeless mess. The owners have got to go, period.

Have none of you troglodytes noticed the shift in the attending population? NFL game tickets are high-end entertainment or corporate networking tools. I'm surprised the 'family of four' price is not more like $1,000, which would be much more in keeping with a high-end event like excellent symphony tickets, a table at Charlie Trotters, or the bar bill for an evening entertaining clients at a swank nightclub. Think I'm lying? Look at the Bulls 'fans' in the stands some time. Look at the price of a Hawks ticket on StubHub lately. The NFL makes far more money off you if you stay home and watch television and pump up the Nielsen numbers. We keep voting against your own best economic interests in election after election, then we're surprised when corporate interests get sweetheart deals that your tax money will pay for, instead of schools, roads, hospitals, all the important stuff that keeps a civilization going. Just be glad Andy McKenna (part owner of the team) isn't going to be governor, or we'd all be required to pay a 5% income tax to "maintain the Bears exellence." I've come to the realization that if I want to watch 'real' football, without greedy corporate hands in my pockets, I'll have to support my local high school team on Friday night, and spend Sunday working out at the gym and tossing the ball around with the kids.

Football is a business and the business of business is to make money. No sense in getting upset with them. They're just doing what they're supposed to do. Just like the health insurance companies that make record profits, cut benefits, and then raise rates. Or, the bankers who line their pockets with bonus money while they refuse to lend to small businesses. As long as money is the object of the game, the haves will figure out how to get more of it, and the have nots will be left to sit and bitch.


You're right, but I noticed a big difference in the '80s. It used to be that it was very rare to see anyone get up during the game for any reason, excluding halftime. When I was visiting Chicago in 1984, a friend took me to the Denver game. While it was a blowout -- the Bears led 35-0 at the end of the first half -- so-called fans were constantly getting up during the entire game. That showed me that these people are not real fans, they don't care enough about the game to watch the whole thing. But this is what the league wanted: get more people to watch at all costs, mainly by dumbing down and cheapening the game by outlawing defense, and get corporate scum to come to the games at high prices, replacing real fans. Well, that's what they got, they're making tons of money, I'm sure they're happy. But they've ruined the game in many ways. NFL games were a lot more fun and interesting to watch around 1970 than they are now, with no running game, no defense, touchdowns a dime a dozen, and very few real fans in the stands.

RichUncle, you took my post, lol, good points! Its just like the health insurers, Oil Company's etc...they need their outrages profits - thats the American way.

So we all agree the mccaskeys make plenty of money already, so why raise prices. They have to be completely out of touch with the fans. Pretty Sad. Now if they bring in a couple Top Free Agents them it will be well worth it, but if not then it really makes you wonder why your a bears fan this long.

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