Concluding two intense weeks of meetings and workshops with key stakeholders from both competitions, 7DAYS EuroCup and Turkish Airlines EuroLeague club delegates, Domestic Leagues and ULEB representatives gathered at the EuroCup Clubs Meeting and ECA Shareholders Meeting, respectively, on Thursday to formally inaugurate the 2018-19 season and take important decisions.
The EuroCup Clubs Meeting opened the day with the 24 clubs and domestic leagues being updated on the latest and most important news about the competition by Euroleague Basketball President and CEO, Jordi Bertomeu, who also informed them about the future vision of strengthening the links between the two major European club competitions – the EuroLeague and EuroCup – the commitment to continue intensifying the commercial efforts from Euroleague Basketball to deliver greater results, and the first steps of the recently created business support unit (EuroLeague BOCS) to service clubs and help them to further develop their local commercial operations.
The meeting continued with Euroleague Basketball executives updating the group and leading discussions on the scheduled agenda topics, which included:
- Reviewing 2017-18 season results, highlighted by the massive improvements on reach and engagement in digital channels, including the EuroCup’s social media platforms and the over the top (OTT) operation, while also stressing the need to deepen the efforts to collectively improve in-arena attendance figures moving forward.
- Reviewing progress on 2018-19 centralized media rights sales, with the addition of at least four new partners to the existing 13 that covered over 140 countries and territories worldwide in 2017-18.
- Reporting on officiating recruitment, education and evaluation programs and approving new officiating processes to increase clarity and the flow of information between Euroleague Basketball and the clubs, as well as new disciplinary criteria related to public comments made by club members.
- Approving the proposed 2018-19 EuroCup Bylaws and calendar as agreed with ULEB, with the competition starting on October 2 and 3, and ending on April 15 with the potential third Finals Game.
- Approving the list of participating clubs for the 2018-19 season as proposed by the ECA Shareholders Executive Board.
- Approving the 2018-19 economic distribution criteria.
The morning continued with the ECA Shareholders Meeting, with Jordi Bertomeu introducing the session and the agenda for the day to the clubs, domestic leagues, and ULEB members. Euroleague Basketball’s President and CEO opened the meeting by welcoming the new clubs that qualified for the competition, congratulating Maccabi’s Shimon Mizrahi for the 50th anniversary of his responsibilities as president of the club, and announcing the winner of the 2017-18 Gianluigi Porelli Executive of the Year award, president of Zalgiris Kaunas Paulius Motiejunas.
The main issues discussed and decisions taken by the group were the following:
- Reviewed attendance and ticketing income growth (4% and 15%, respectively, with 8,864 spectators on average at every Turkish Airlines EuroLeague game), as well as Final Four ticketing revenue performance over the last five seasons.
- Agreed on 2019-20 expansion plans, with the allocation of two-year licenses to Germany and France, with FC Bayern Munich receiving the former, and ASVEL Villeurbanne potentially receiving the latter, should proposed minimum requirements be met by the club.
- Agreed to start negotiations with the recently formed EuroLeague Players Association (ELPA).
- Reviewed the commercial performance of Marketing Partners, focusing on the record number of 32 partners, rights architecture, and activation efforts and results.
- Reviewed digital performance figures, including:
. Record Euroleague.net and localized sites’ accumulated numbers in page views (7% increase) and unique users (47% increase), with 34 million unique fans visiting the platforms during the 2017-18 season. The Euroleague Basketball app registered a 29% increase on monthly active users. The EuroLeague TV OTT platform, offering streams of all EL and EC games, registered a remarkable 60% growth in subscribed users.
. Record Social Media engagement rates (17% increase) and video views (38% increase), with the Euroleague Basketball platform amassing 56.7 million fans between the league, clubs and players channels, and the Final Four achieving a worldwide #1 trending rank on both competition days.
- Approved 2017-18 financial closing figures and 2018-19 budget, as well as new clubs’ economic distribution criteria, that will see slight adjustments to the current model in place to further ensure stability in market pool receivables and reduce potential collective fluctuation caused by potential sudden major variations in local markets’ revenue performance.
- Reviewed Financial Stability & Fair Play Regulations (FSFPR) compliance report presented by the Management Control Commission President Daniel Geey and member Thomas Braumann, and planned next steps. Approved FSFPR to be applied to 7DAYS EuroCup clubs as of 2021-22.
- Reporting on officiating recruitment, education and evaluation programs and approving new officiating processes to increase clarity and the flow of information between Euroleague Basketball and the clubs, as well as new disciplinary criteria related to public comments made by clubs’ members.
- Approved the proposed 2018-19 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Bylaws and calendar, with the season commencing on October 11 and ending on May 19 with the Final Four in Vitoria Gasteiz, Spain.
- Approved the list of participating clubs for the 2018-19 season as proposed by the ECA Shareholders Executive Board.
- Reviewed EuroLeague BOCS’ unit 2017-18 operations and 2018-19 plans.
- Discussed potential action to be taken with regards to in-game entertainment as a collective to reinforce commitment with the promotion of gender equality values towards the Euroleague Basketball community, and agreed to continue discussion in specific workshops during the 2018-19 season.