Monumental Sports & Entertainment is an investor in the Arena Football League (AFL), and I am disappointed about the AFL’s decision to close team services and business operations in local markets .
We continue to believe in the AFL product – its fast-paced, high-scoring style of football is perfect for a future where younger viewers digest content via OTT channels and where sports betting becomes an important component to a league’s business model. The league’s business plan called for steady local market expansion in order to develop scale and a national footprint. Unfortunately, the league has struggled to secure enough additional financial investment to execute that plan. Last week, the league was sued by a former insurer that provided workers compensation coverage for the AFL from 2009 – 2012, alleging that the league owes the insurer millions. That claim and other legacy liabilities that relate to prior league operations – all from long before MSE invested – have created significant financial constraints for the league. One consequence is the need for the league to shut down its local business operation units, including the business teams supporting the Valor and Brigade, immediately, while it continues to work to identify solutions to address those financial constraints.
Monumental is proud of the work that we did to generate passion and excitement for the AFL amongst our employees, our fans, and for our local AFL teams. We did something brave, innovative and fun. I want to thank Commissioner Randall Boe, the league, teams and players for their dedication and commitment. I especially want to thank Jeff Bowler, Richard Lintker and Dana Campbell, who worked selflessly and tirelessly to build model teams committed to doing more, caring more and pushing harder.