The Braves’ return to the top of the National League East paid off for the team financially with revenue and profit increasing in the most recent quarter.
Team owner Liberty Media disclosed Thursday that the Braves’ revenue increased by $15 million, from $185 million to $200 million, in the July-through-September period, compared to the same quarter a year earlier.
The Braves’ operating profit before depreciation and amortization grew by $24 million in the latest quarter, from $48 million to $72 million, compared to the same period in 2017, Liberty Media said.
The company attributed the Braves’ revenue growth to “increased ticket prices, higher attendance and increased concessions per turnstile” and to increased operations at The Battery Atlanta mixed-use development.
The increased operating profit was “primarily driven by higher revenue and reduced operating expense from lower player salaries due to the acceleration of player salary expense in previous quarters as a result of released and injured players,” Liberty Media said.
That was a reference to the combined $37.5 million that the Braves paid released players Adrian Gonzalez and Scott Kazmir for the 2017 season. Those expenditures were fully accounted for in previous quarters’ financial reports.
The Braves had the same number of home games – 41 – in the July-through-September quarters of both 2017 and 2018. The playoff games against the Dodgers in early October are not included in the financial results released Thursday.
The Braves continue to carry a heavy load of debt associated with the construction of SunTrust Park, The Battery and a new spring-training complex. The team’s debt declined slightly during the most recent quarter, from $629 million as of June 30 to $626 million as of Sept. 30.
The Braves are one of the few sports teams with publicly traded stock, which requires the quarterly disclosure of financial information that most teams keep private.
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