Every year, the Tampa Bay Business Journal assembles several prominent sports business leaders in Tampa Bay for a discussion. These “Business of Sports” events are usually held at a sports venue (the last two years’ events were at Amalie Arena), cost nearly $100, and are hosted by well-regarded sports media personnel.
The 2017 Business of Sports event looks just as good as previous events. Hosted by Sports Business Journal and Sports Business Daily Executive Editor Abraham Madkour, the event features front office personnel from the Lightning, Bucs, Rays, and Rowdies, as well as personnel from major Tampa sporting events such as the College Football Playoff. Representing the Rays will be President Brian Auld and VP of Strategy Melanie Lenz.
Surprisingly absent is Minor League Baseball or any of the Spring Training teams. Those teams are part of the Tampa sports ecosystem. Their facilities are in part paid for by taxpayers and local fans also buy their tickets and merchandise. Both Minor League Baseball and a representative from the Minor League teams should be present at the Business of Sports event.
Personally, I think the most interesting guest of the day will be Tampa Bay Rowdies Owner Bill Edwards. Edwards has big plans for the Rowdies in downtown St Pete. I would ask how these plans coincide with the future plans of the Rays. Unfortunately, however, I will not be attending. But I will be following along on social media.