The new investors in the BBL have targeted four new franchises with a promise to upgrade its tech.

Following discussions first revealed by MVP earlier last year, Miami-based 777 Partners have put flesh on the bones of what they plan to do following a spend of £7 million to buy a 45 per cent stake in the British Basketball League.

In unveiling their plans on Monday following over 15 months of discussions, the investment firm claimed they will “deliver an ambitious plan that will span the entirety of the sport – from community grassroots through to the overall infrastructure of the elite game in the UK.”

With the BBL now seeking its first CEO in over two decades, the announcement confirmed there would be a digital transformation strategy with in-stadia technology “to improve and enhance the product and to deliver the League and its content more effectively to the sport’s digitally native audience. Further recruitment, building a sophisticated data infrastructure and the adaption of new technologies are all also key to the deployment of investment.”

It added: “With regards to the impact of the investment at game-level, strategic focus will extend both on and off the court, with initiatives ranging from elevating the quality of play and investing in official and refereeing development, to the upskilling of game-day delivery teams.”

Joshua Wander, Managing Partner from 777 Partners, said: “Basketball is undoubtedly a disruptive force to the institutions that dominate UK sport. The current barriers to entry and lack of support at all levels of the game have a disproportionate and inequitable impact on underprivileged and minority communities that stand to benefit from its potential.

“Observing the systemic forces inhibiting the growth of British basketball has deepened our resolve as a stakeholder. We are determined to work closely alongside the clubs and within their respective communities to ensure our investment serves to incubate the sport more broadly.”

It is understood that the clubs will receive only a small amount of funds directly with most of the monies going into a central pot.

777, whose stake will be closer to 50 per cent through its ownership of London Lions and the league’s own control of Plymouth City Patriots, also promised to inject extra resource towards the WBBL and to work with the four home nation governing bodies.

It is believed that the Americans have signalled an interest in a separate commercial deal for the Great Britain programme but no deal has been done with the British Basketball Federation.

Rodney Walker, chairman of the British Basketball League, said: “To state that we are thrilled to have 777 Partners come onboard – as passionate investors who share our vision – is somewhat of an understatement. We couldn’t be more delighted that, as a result of this significant injection of capital, we are now able to fast track the League’s big ambitions and unlock the huge untapped potential that we know the sport of basketball has in this country.

“Basketball is unique in its ability to reach across cultural, societal and economic divides and in its ability to engage with a young, diverse audience. There is therefore huge potential to use the transformative power of sport for the benefit of our growing audience and to increase the impact we can deliver from the grassroots to the very top of the professional game.”

A recent MVP survey found that most corners of the game wanted the investment funds to be spent on marketing, communications and digital media, traditionally areas of weakness for the league.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • MySpace
  • Print

You must be logged in to post a comment Login