Sports Business Journal released its annual rankings of sports business leaders. For 2021, they named Robert Kraft as the most influential team owner in sports. The publication chose Kraft at least in part because of his role in obtaining $110 billion in new media rights deals for the NFL. In addition, he was instrumental in helping the NFL to land those deals during the spring months.
Noting the importance of the move, the publication wrote, “The New England Patriots’ longtime owner has been out front in efforts to sell a stake in NFL Media.” It continued, “and a critical conduit to Fanatics founder Michael Rubin and a host of celebrity and business VIPs.”
The announcement comes on the heels of Kraft announcing other significant changes in this team. Notably, he announced the organization would be investing $225 million into a renovation plan for Gillette Stadium. Kraft’s investment in the stadium may be critical to holding the 2026 World Cup. The investment in a renovation plan does not hinder the proposed development of a new stadium in the area for the New England Revolution. The Kraft Group says that is still in the plans, and they are looking at locations in or close to Downtown Boston to make it happen.
Other Notables from the Sports Business Journal
The Sports Business Journal also named John Henry, the principal owner of the Red Sox, Michael Jordan, NASCAR and Hornets owner, and Jerry Jones, the owner of the Cowboys, at the top of its list for the year.
Henry was noted for his work with others in his organization for their purchase of the Pittsburgh Penguins of the NHL worth $900 million. He is also playing an important role in the labor policy committing of the NHL.
Numerous others were noted in the article as well. That includes Gerry Cardinale, the founder and managing partner of RedBird Capital, who ranked in the “Dealmakers” category of the survey. Athlete influencers were also named, including LeBron James and his business partners for their work in landing deals with Pepsi, his movie deal, and the SpringHill Entertainment Company’s overall growth.
In the Industry Drivers category, Jason Robins, who is the CEO of DraftKings, received the recognition. The organization said that the organization may become the leader in fantasy sports and sports betting over FanDuel.
About Robert Kraft
Robert Kraft is noted for many accomplishments, most notably those as the head of Kraft Group. There, he serves as the founder, chairman, and CEO of the organization. As an investor and philanthropist, Kraft has made his mark in numerous organizations and verticals over the years. That includes his work with the New England Patriots, New England Revolution, Boston Uprising, and the Gillette Stadium. He is also noted for his work and holdings with Rand-Whitney Group, International Forest Products, and over 100 more venture and private-equity investments. His work focuses on areas of sports and entertainment as well as packaging, paper, venture investing, and real estate investment.
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