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Private Firm, Public Corporation or Member’s Association Governance Structures in European Football

  • Egon Franck


    (University of Zurich)

Based on the analysis of the specific environment in which football clubs compete, this paper presents a comparative institutional analysis of three paradigmatic structures of football club governance: privately owned football firms, public football corporations (stock corporations with dispersed ownership) and members’ associations with an own legal personality (Verein). Against the background that “spending power” is the main driver of competitive advantage for clubs in the overinvestment environment of European football, the governance structure of the privately owned football firm exhibits superior abilities to tap sources of funding and channel them into playing talent. The results of the analysis are applied to current developments in German and English football and to recent initiatives of the Football Governing Bodies.

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Article provided by Fitness Information Technology in its journal International Journal of Sport Finance.

Volume (Year): 5 (2010)
Issue (Month): 2 (May)
Pages: 108-127

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Handle: RePEc:jsf:intjsf:v:5:y:2010:i:2:p:108-127
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  1. Alchian, Armen A. & Demsetz, Harold, 1973. "The Property Right Paradigm," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 33(01), pages 16-27, March.
  2. Fama, Eugene F & Jensen, Michael C, 1983. "Agency Problems and Residual Claims," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(2), pages 327-49, June.
  3. Egon Franck & Stephan Nüesch, 2007. "Talent and/or Popularity - What Does it Take to Be a Superstar," Working Papers 0018, University of Zurich, Center for Research in Sports Administration (CRSA).
  4. Leif Brandes & Egon Franck & Stephan Nuesch, 2006. "Local Heroes and Superstars - An Empirical Analysis of Star Attraction in German Soccer," Working Papers 0007, University of Zurich, Center for Research in Sports Administration (CRSA), revised 2007.
  5. Whitney, James D, 1993. "Bidding Till Bankrupt: Destructive Competition in Professional Team Sports," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 31(1), pages 100-115, January.
  6. Helmut Dietl & Egon Franck & Markus Lang, 2005. "Overinvestment in Team Sports Leagues: A Contest Theory Model," Working Papers 0002, University of Zurich, Center for Research in Sports Administration (CRSA), revised 2007.
  7. Egon Franck & Carola Jungwirth, 2002. "Reconciling investors and donators - The governance structure of open source," Working Papers 0008, University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU).
  8. Helmut Dietl & Egon Franck & Patrick, 2003. "Überinvestitionsprobleme in einer Sportliga," Working Papers 0020, University of Zurich, Institute for Strategy and Business Economics (ISU).
  9. Akerlof, George A, 1976. "The Economics of Caste and of the Rat Race and Other Woeful Tales," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 90(4), pages 599-617, November.
  10. Fama, Eugene F & Jensen, Michael C, 1983. "Separation of Ownership and Control," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 26(2), pages 301-25, June.
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