Every year, Forbes releases its annual list of NBA franchise valuations. The NBA is doing very well for itself thanks to increased viewership and a new, lucrative television deal. Since Vivek Ranadivé’s ownership coalition bought the Kings in 2013 for $535 million, the franchise valuation has gone up each and every year. This year, the valuation has grown to $1.08 billion, placing the Kings as the 15th most valuable franchise in the NBA. That 16% higher valuation jump ties the Kings with Milwaukee for the second highest increase in valuation in the NBA, while the Golden St. Warriors jumped up a whopping 37% to a valuation of $2.6 billion. The Knicks remain the NBA’s most valuable franchise at $3.3 billion.
One big reason for Sacramento’s big jump has to be the completion of the brand new Golden 1 Center, which is the newest and highest-tech arena in the NBA until the Warriors complete their San Francisco project in 2020. In part because of the increased revenue streams provided by the arena, the Kings operating income jumped for the first time in the Ranadivé-era, from $4.1 million last year to an estimated $18.4 million this year.
The Kings are doing very well for themselves from the business side of things, a trend that has continued under Chris Granger’s leadership as the President of Business Operations. We’re still waiting on the basketball side of things to show the same kind of turnaround.