Montreal Impact owner wants tax break from city because he’s unhappy with 500% appreciation of team value

And speaking of MLS’s wacky ownership structure, the owner of (the operating rights to) the Montreal Impact says he needs a tax break from the city of Montreal so that he can stop losing so much money:

“We are losing $11 million to $12 million per season,” [Impact president and CEO Joey] Saputo disclosed during a frank and transparent discussion with members of the media at Stade Saputo.

Saputo said one way the club is looking to stem the red ink is with help from city hall by reducing the club’s annual tax bill of $2 million.

“Frank and transparent,” eh, TSN analyst Noel Butler? So Saputo opened his books so that members of the media could verify those $11 million a year losses? No? Well, it’s the thought that counts.

Anyway, Saputo appears to be holding off on spending $50 million in upgrades on Stade Saputo because he says he doesn’t want the stadium to be worth more and his tax bill to go up — in perky Canada, sports team owners have to pay property taxes on their stadiums even when they sit on public land — which is about as good an argument as “I bought an MLS team for $23 million and they go for $150 million now but I’m losing money so bail me out here!” He’s got one Canadian sportswriter on his side, though: Butler warns that without subsidies the Impact could fall to be a second-tier team like fill out the bottom of European leagues, which doesn’t even make any sense since teams in European leagues pay their own player payrolls unlike in MLS, but anyway, can Joey Saputo have $2 million, please? He’s really sincere!


8 comments on “Montreal Impact owner wants tax break from city because he’s unhappy with 500% appreciation of team value

  1. I mean if the city isn’t going to hand over the money, who will? Think of the ROI I would be sacrificing!

  2. “We are losing $11 million to $12 million per season,”…”without subsidies the Impact could fall to be a second-tier team”

    Hint to Montreal citizens and politicians, except the small portion of you who are soccer fans: The correct response is “Why should we care?”

  3. He’s almost certainly lying about the size of the losses but Forbes had them losing $3 million per year before taxes based on 2016 numbers.
    https://www.forbes.com/sites/chrissmith/2017/08/16/major-league-soccers-most-valuable-teams-2/#5062a880b815

    Some interesting stuff in that list. The Galaxy and Sounders look to be doing quite well. But New York, Toronto and Chicago are seeing huge losses, or at least were at the time of those numbers.

    • I actually looked at that very article before writing this post, but the chart was so low-res as to be completely unreadable. Anyone else having that problem?

  4. I do hear that Montreal is the Chicago of Canada when it comes to taxes, don’t know if it is true.

  5. Allez les Bleus , Blanc , Noir , the City could give him a break . Then maybe he can get some better ´ Name players