Thursday, July 10, 2008

Forbes Florida Marlins Valuation was 97.4% Accurate

I thought I had been following this issue closely, but in preparing a longer post regarding the stadium deal, I came across an amazing number in the Florida Marlins Ballpark Project Report issued on January 22, 2008 by Miami-Dade County Manager, George Burgess. In section 22(i), Community Benefit Obligations, the Florida Marlins assumed team value is stated at $250,000,000.

Forbes estimated the team's value back in March of 2008 at $256,000,000. As part of estimating every MLB team's value, Forbes determines each team's operating profits and then applies its internally developed metrics [i.e. the hard part] to arrive at the team valuations. The point is that the revenues and expenses are the most straight forward aspects of the data they provide. The valuations themselves are subjective, short of a sale which would provide a benchmark. Or in the case of the 2008 Florida Marlins, a publicly issued document which was negotiated between local governments and the Florida Marlins in which the team ties itself to a reasonable valuation.

End of manufactured controversy. In being off just 2.4% [256/250], Forbes basically nailed the number on the head. Contrast that with Marlins President David Samson's comments to the Sun-Sentinel's Juan Rodriguez at he time the Forbes 2008 numbers were publicized:

'Every year I continue to be surprised at the absolute inaccuracy that a so-called reputable magazine is willing to print,' Marlins President David Samson said. 'We've never gotten called by them. We've never been asked to verify, deny, confirm, nothing. It's just a shame their readership is forced to read numbers that aren't true. 'I know the number they have for the Marlins is simply wrong. They have no information of any kind on which to base that article.'
I had earlier posts which delved into why the Forbes numbers are credible and how Mr Samson has the unenviable task of trying to debunk perceptions as to the Marlins recent profitability. No need to speculate now. The Marlins, through Samson, are lying about their numbers and the county manager's memo is the proof.

1 comment:

ASponge said...

To the surprise of no one, another fantastic piece from you, Jorge.

Everyone knows these teams try and fudge their numbers, making them look worse for public perception. It's nice to see some substantiation.