Three of California’s well-known stadiums could be changing management if the recommendations of both venues’ oversight boards are accepted. According to reports, change could be on the way for the O.co Coliseum, Oracle Arena, and Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
According to the Oakland Tribune, the Oakland Coliseum Complex, which houses the first two venues, may be under new management when its current contract expires. The O.co Coliseum is home to both the NFL’s Oakland Raiders and the MLB’s Oakland Athletics, while the Oracle Arena is home to the NBA’s Golden State Warriors. Both arenas are under the management of SMG, and have been for the past 13 years.
However, a selection subcommittee of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority, which recently met to discuss bids received from SMG, AEG, and Global Spectrum, was expected to recommend the bid from AEG when the entire committee met on April 20, 2012. While the nature of the three bids was not released, the choice of AEG as the new managers of Oakland Coliseum Complex would serve to further expand AEG’s presence in both California and in the realm of sport venue management.
Currently AEG, a Los Angeles-based company, owns, operates, or consults with 100 venues around the world. In California, AEG is attached to the Staples Center and the LA Live entertainment district in Los Angeles, along with owning the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings and the MLS’ Los Angeles Galaxy. AEG also already has a standing relationship with the O.co Coliseum, as the company currently promotes shows at the venue.
AEG sees this new management opportunity as a chance to boost sales at both venues, but particularly the Oracle Arena, which has seen its concert ticket sales ranking plummet over the past two years.
“The city can make a lot of money if we were here — bottom line,” AEG Executive Vice President Kevin McDowell told the Oakland Tribune. “We want the opportunity to make it happen.”
In Los Angeles, a similar management change is being proposed for the Los Angeles Coliseum. The home of the University of Southern California’s storied football program, the L.A. Memorial Coliseum Commission is recommending that control of the stadium be transferred from the public to the University. Much like the University of Southern California’s football program, the L.A. Memorial Coliseum has fallen under scrutiny recently, with several indictments filed against employees on charges including embezzlement and receiving kickbacks.
Under the terms of the proposed management deal, the University would sign a 42-year master lease for the stadium. Following the expiration of the lease, the stadium would then revert back to public ownership. The agreement would also limit the University’s use of the building to 25 times a year when an event would consist of 25,000 people or more due to parking concerns.
In exchange for the lease, the University of Southern California would continue its yearly rent payment of $1 million, as well as agree to spend up to $70 million to renovate and improve the stadium. The L.A. Memorial Coliseum Commission is expected to hold a final vote on May 2, 2012.
While neither deal is officially set, all accounts point to both proposals passing and management of the various venues changing hands sometime in the near future.