This week’s sports industry reading list

Congratulations, sports industry aficionados, because you’ve stumbled across the sports industry reading list – a regular selection of the best, most interesting and most relevant pieces about the global business and politics of sport. I’m your curator and I’ve spent much of the past few days carefully scouring the web for the finest profiles, interviews, features, analysis and opinion, quite simply for your reading pleasure. Here are the results. To business.

This week’s sports industry must-reads

•  In the wake of the announcement that McDonald’s has terminated its Olympic sponsorship, and the IOC’s confirmation last week that Intel has joined the ranks of TOP partners, there has been plenty of, frankly, half-baked analysis from some who should know better. Thank goodness, then, for this eminently sensible assessment of the current status of Olympic sponsors and finances  from Inside the Games’ David Owen.

•  This is an illuminating oral history of NFL Europe, by ESPN’s Jon Gold, ten years after the National Football League called time on the project.

•  A piece well worth reading here by Nascar’s vice president of analytics and insights, Norris Scott, and published recently in the Journal of Digital and Social Media Marketing, examining sponsorship return on investment in what the cool kids are now calling an omni-channel world.

•  Igor Rabiner has written a lengthy but fascinating feature for The Blizzard charting the rise and fall and rise of AS Monaco, newly-crowned Ligue 1 champions and darlings of last season’s Champion’s League.

•  A typically incisive piece by Christopher Clarey for the New York Times on what the next chapter of the America’s Cup might look like, and the starkly differing philosophies of the two teams in contention to shape it, Oracle Team USA and Emirates Team New Zealand.

•  Andrew Brandt’s latest Business of Football column for MMQB examines the tricky subject of ‘tanking’ and how long-term thinking can be the key to success for NFL franchises, even if it is at the expense of short-term gains.

•  New Formula One chief executive Chase Carey was on stage at the FIA’s Sport Conference in Geneva last week and he also recently gave James Allen an interview, published on the excellent James Allen on F1 blog, in which he considered the always-interesting subject of where the balance lies between sport and technology.

•  Sticking with motorsport, if you were looking for something on the business behind the Autopolis circuit in Japan – host of, among other things, the country’s popular Super GT category – then you’re luck’s in, thanks to Oscar Boyd and the Japan Times.

•   An interesting perspective, which may divide opinion, from Tod Meisner for Front Office Sports, on Snapchat and the sports industry.

This is a fun ‘behind-the-scenes of the broadcast’ piece (the best type of behind-the-scenes pieces) peeling back the curtain on British channel ITV’s coverage of Royal Ascot, by the Daily Telegraph’s Alan Tyers.

•  Manny Pacquiao fights Australian Jeff Horn in Brisbane this coming weekend and I enjoyed this, by Grantlee Kieza of local newspaper the Courier Mail, on how and why it’s happening.

That’s this week’s recommended reading – do tune your web browser this way once again next week for more. In the meantime, all feedback’s welcome – you can get in touch via email (davidcushnan@gmail.com) or find me on Twitter, @DavidCushnan. Until next time.

This week’s sports industry reading list

And we’re back. This is the sports industry reading list, returning after a brief hiatus during which, frankly, there have often been more important things to be reading about. Nonetheless, I’ve curated – LOVE that word – the best, the most interesting and the most relevant pieces on the global business of sport from the past few days – a mix of interviews, profiles, long-form features, punchy analysis and opinion. So let’s get going. To business:

This week’s sports industry must-reads:

•  A very good series from the Guardian, Sport 2.0, went live last week with the aim of considering the future of sport in a connected world. It’s all well worth reading but the pick, to my mind, is Simon Hattenstone’s piece examining the way in which consumption of football is changing almost before our eyes.

•  An extensive interview here – so extensive it had to be split in two – with new PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan, by SportsPro’s America’s editor Michael Long, on his plans to grow the game and how he intends to make his own mark in a role held for so long by Tim Finchem.

•  World sport’s attention is gradually moving once again towards Russia, with the World Cup just a year away and the Confederations Cup now up and running. Nick Ames, writing for ESPN FC, put together this interesting piece on Kazan, a city that may help to change perceptions of the host country over the next 12 months.

•  It’s on (with extra hype). Mayweather versus McGregor, August 26th, Las Vegas. And, happily, Kevin Draper has already written perhaps the definitive ‘business behind the bout’ piece in the New York Times.

•  Nascar writer Jeff Gluck has got a nice little series running where he speaks to various series stakeholders about their personal social media strategy. The latest edition, featuring former Nascar champion and prolific tweeter Brad Keselowski, is particularly fascinating.

•  Hein Verbruggen, the influential and controversial former president of world cycling’s governing body, died last week. Sportcal’s Callum Murray sat down with the Dutchman as recently as May for what turned out to be his final interview – it’s a fascinating long read.

•  Plenty to chew on in Olympic sponsorship circles over the past few days, with Intel poised to join the worldwide marketing programme and the early conclusion to the longstanding partnership between the Games and McDonald’s. Inside the Games’ Michael Pavitt’s latest blog considers the IOC’s current financial landscape.

•  It’s Women’s Sports Week in the UK and the BBC has published an analysis of the gender prize money gap. The summary: it’s closing. The full details, put together by Anna Thompson & Kate Kopczyk, are well worth your time.

•  And finally, a long and revealing LA Times profile of Jeanie Buss, controlling owner and president of the Los Angeles Lakers, by Tania Ganguli.

That’s all for now. Thanks for reading and, if you feel the need, do drop me a line at davidcushnan@gmail.com or find me on Twitter: @DavidCushnan. Until next time.