How Packers Can Weather Financial Storm From COVID-19, Even With Lambeau Field 85% Empty

How Packers Can Weather Financial Storm From COVID-19, Even With Lambeau Field 85% Empty article feature image

Joe Robbins/Getty Images. Pictured: Lambeau Field

They might be the NFL team in the city with the smallest population, but Green Bay Packers president Mark Murphy said the franchise is in position to weather the storm.

Murphy said Tuesday afternoon that the Packers have a $411 million in their corporate reserve fund, but even with fewer fans, they could still be profitable.

Murphy said that he is, as of now, projecting that the team could allow 10,000 to 12,000 fans per game at Lambeau.

He added that decisions about how many fans the team lets in won't be based on financials since the low end of the number is above the breakeven point. It will instead be based on public health and safety.

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On Tuesday, the team plans on sending out an opt-in/opt-out survey to its season ticket holders. Those who opt out will remain season ticket holders and get to keep their same seats for next season.

"I feel confident we will get this season in," Murphy said, noting even if it took not having fans at all.

Murphy said roughly two-thirds of the Packers revenue is the equal share of national revenue that they receive, the bulk of which is from the NFL's television deals.

In the call on Tuesday, Murphy broke out last year's NFL revenue share number for the first time — $296 million for each team, up 7.9% from the year before.

That payment alone allows the Packers to pay for their player costs.

Thanks to a huge local business ($210.9 million), the Packers pulled in more than $500 million in revenue ($506.9 million) for the first time ever. Murphy said the team ranked ninth in the league in overall revenue this past season.

Even though business is slow everywhere due to the threat of COVID-19, Murphy said he feels optimistic about the Packers future business thanks in part to the team's diversification in the land surrounding Lambeau Field, where the first rent money has started to come in.

The team also has TitleTownTech, a $25 million venture fund with Microsoft that funded 14 companies in its first year.

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