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A focus on the fans

Green Bay Packers General Manager Brian Gutekunst provides the football report to shareholders on July 24, providing a recap of last year and the outlook for the coming year. Kris Leonhardt photo

By Kris Leonhardt


GREEN BAY – While the Green Bay Packers reported a 42% decrease in the organization’s net income for the 2022-23 fiscal year which ended in March, the team recorded record revenue numbers of $610.3 million — up nearly 5.5% from the previous year.

“It was another strong, financial year for the Packers,” said Packers President/CEO Mark Murphy, “the second year now after the pandemic, with normal operations. National revenue continues to grow, really led by television contracts. The TV deals, I think last year was the last year of the old deals, and the new deals will kick in next year and those are long-term arrangements. The TV deals have been very positive for the league; the ratings have been extremely strong, and I think the league has been smart with the move to streaming and Amazon and that was very positive with the Thursday night package.

“Local revenue did grow, but at a smaller rate than the national level. One of the issues there was one less home game.”

Expenses were up 8% for the organization, which included an increase in player costs from nearly $281 million to a little over $294 million.

Profit from operations also decreased by 11.7% and the investment fund showed a 501.4% loss.

Acting Secretary/Vice President of Finance and Administration Paul Baniel said that the one home game would have put the operations numbers at a level comparable to last year.

“[The investment fund] pretty much follows our stock market,” he explained. “You know, it was a bear market last year and all of our 401ks fell last year. Two years ago, shortly after the pandemic took hold it was quite the opposite. The investment fund follows the market just in general as the market goes up and down.”

But, Murphy said that the Packers organization has been focusing on enhancing the fan experience.

“Over the last two years, we will have invested $200 million and that is a combination of three different projects — the new football facility, which we just opened up; the new video boards and then a series of renovations to our concourse,” Murphy explained. “When you go farther back, it’s a total of $600 million since the redevelopment in 2003.”

Thousands of shareholders packed the stands of Lambeau field during the annual meeting of shareholders on July 24. Kris Leonhardt photo

Murphy added that none of the $600 million investment into the facilities came from public money.

“We also continue to invest in the community. The charitable impact is just under $10 million; that is a high priority for us,” he said.

Murphy also noted the contribution made by the Packers to Titletown, which is celebrating its fifth anniversary.

“That was really a key aspect in getting the (NFL) Draft to come here,” he said.

And the draft itself will be a benefit for the community.

“The draft will be the biggest event we’ve ever hosted — $94 million impact and expected to bring a quarter million people into the community,” Murphy said.

“Hotels across the entire state are going to benefit from it with that many people coming in.”

By augmenting wi-fi and cellular offerings and upgrading the video boards, the team continues its work on fan hospitality.

A five- to six-year renovation on the concourse area will produce a conversion to grab & go stands to get fans back to their seats faster.

 “The NFL is very popular on TV; ratings are strong. It’s hard to compete with TV. I think we need to — it’s not just us; I think every team is doing it — to really make sure our fans are having a good experience when they come to the stadium,” Murphy added.

These continuing efforts are working toward keeping fans in the stands, which doesn’t seem too concerning considering the 140,000-strong waitlist the Packers maintain for season tickets.

“We do not have any trouble. When people give up seats, we have no trouble filling them,” Murphy said.

Packers Director of Public Affairs Aaron Popkey said that the renewal rate for season tickets is about 99.6%.

“Then, when we do go out to the list, we have about a 70% pick up,” Popkey said.

With a focus on fan experience, Packers leadership continues to ensure that Lambeau Field is a destination and revenues stay strong.

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