chapter  Chapter 2
17 Pages

A framework for diversification decisions in professional football

WithSascha L. Schmidt, Florian Holzmayer

The continuous growth of the European football market in recent years has triggered an interesting debate not only in business practice but also in economics, social science, and management literature. This chapter introduces the evolution of economic growth theory starting from neo-classical concepts and endogenous growth models and then continues by characterising the overall structure and building blocks of the football industry from a macro-economic perspective. It then discusses the growth impact of internationalisation, commercialisation, and digitalisation on European football from a management and sports business perspective. Based on a review of different growth strategies and frameworks it introduces a 3x3 strategic growth matrix – along the dimensions geographical reach and business proximity – classifying different growth concepts for professional football clubs and leagues. Examples such as Bayern Munich’s market entry strategy to China, TSG Hoffenheim’s innovation management, Schalke 04’s eSport concept, or the Bundesliga’s globalisation approach are provided to categorise current activities in the football market according to the strategic growth matrix. Finally, a future outlook of the European football industry is given and the limits of growth are discussed